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Annual Preventative Health Examinations for Dogs and Cats

Annual Preventative Health Examinations for Dogs and Cats

Working in partnership to keep your family pet happy and healthy

A yearly preventative health exam for our pets is like us seeing our family doctor just once every 6-8 years. So when one of these examinations is missed we lose out on a valuable opportunity to keep your pet safe and to maintain your pet in an improved state of health for many years.

Here at Scottsdale Veterinary Hospital, your veterinarian will evaluate your pet and discuss with you tools for assisting your dog or cat to live a happier and healthier life. Topics that may be discussed but that are not limited to, include: dental care, weight management, proper nutrition, beneficial supplements, and grooming tips for skin and ear conditions. The doctors and our team are here to help you and your pet throughout their life. From puppy or kitten-hood through to their senior years your veterinary health team is here to support your pet and recognize early signs of disease. Early diagnosis and management can add quality years to your pet's life.

Our feline friends cannot be forgotten. Annual health exams for them are just as important as they are for dogs. Cats evolved as predators living on their own. This resulted in cats developing the ability to hide signs of early illness. They are subtle, and so too are the diagnostic signs required to recognize that your cat may need help. Visit Healthy Cats for Life or The Morris Animal Foundation for more information.

During each yearly health examination, your veterinarian will discuss your pet’s individual risk of disease exposure and how vaccinations may help minimize that risk. Not every patient is equal when it comes to exposure risk so a tailored vaccination protocol should be discussed and agreed upon by you and your veterinarian. Individualized parasite control programs, for both external (fleas, ticks and mites) and internal parasites (roundworm, hookworm, tapeworm, heartworm, coccidia and giardia), will also be discussed. Factors to consider in regards to parasite control are the environment in which your pet lives, exposure to other pets and wildlife, travel, and activities they participate in.

As your pet ages, blood work helps your veterinarian evaluate internal organ and hormonal function of your pet. Age is not a disease, but as our pets age the risk of disease, such as diabetes mellitus, hyper or hypo-thyroidism, Cushing’s disease, and kidney and liver dysfunctions, increases. See the link provided from the Pet Health Network and IDEXX Laboratories for more information on blood work screening tests.

Yearly health exams can help prolong our pets’ lives by identifying concerning trends or subtle developing illnesses. Early recognition and intervention is key to the prevention of more serious health conditions, especially as our pets age.

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