Why do we recommend an annual wellness examination for your pets and why do they need them? Well you’ve heard the old saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” it also happens to be true for the health of your pet. Annual exams can help determine the general well being of your pet and help identify potential problems. Early detection of problems is particularly important as prompt action may solve a problem before serious consequences occur.
Puppies and kittens need wellness exams to ensure they’re; growing properly, getting appropriate vaccinations, parasite control, and checking for any congenital defects or abnormalities. The routine annual wellness exams can act as an early warning system to help catch health problems before they become a serious health problem in adult pets. Just like grandma, older pets require routine wellness exams to either prevent or manage the onset of many age related chronic diseases, such as heart trouble, diabetes, kidney or liver disease, cancer or arthritis.
When your pet visits Willamette Valley Animal Hospital a weight and temperature will be taken (if they don’t object too much) by a trained veterinary technician. One of our doctors will then get a brief health history of your pet and then proceed with a complete physical. This includes a check of the heart and lungs, ears, eyes, nose and mouth. Our doctors will also check for lameness, pain or weakness in the limbs and spine, muscle tone and joint function, along with palpating the abdomen to assess the condition of internal organs and to detect tumors or other irregularities.
We will also ensure that your pet is current on routine vaccinations and recommend updating lapsed vaccinations. In addition we recommend annual fecal examinations to check for intestinal parasites such as tape worms the come from the ingesting of fleas. Depending on the season heartworm testing and prevention and flea control may also be suggested for your pet’s health and comfort. So you see there are lots of reasons we recommend an annual wellness exam for your pet and any one of them can be reason enough for you to bring your pet in to see one of or veterinarians. An annual physical exam is not just about receiving vaccines, its about making certain your pet is happy and healthy, giving them the best chance to live a long and happy life with you.