Puppy and kitten exams and vaccines will be covered in another section.
The single most important reason for bringing your pet to see us is for a wellness examination. We need to see your pet every 6 months to evaluate him/her for early signs of disease and give recommendations on how to best keep him or her healthy. Just as your physician recommends that you visit every 12 months, we require visits every 6 months since animals age so much faster, and a lot can change in those 6 months. Your veterinarian will do a thorough physical examination, looking closely at all body systems, from the teeth, eyes, heart, lungs, and joints. We also will discuss routine screening blood work and urine testing to evaluate your pet for early signs of disease. This information can be vital to preventing a more significant problem from occurring. The blood work may be done annually or more frequently if any abnormalities are found on previous blood work.
Vaccinations are customized based on the risk of each patient. Some vaccines will need to be administered every 6 months, while others need once yearly, or once every 3 years. Talk to your veterinarian about the best plan for your pet.
Professional dental cleanings and examinations under anesthesia are recommended by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) starting by 1 year of age, and annually thereafter. Periodontal disease is the most common oral disease – affecting ~75% of the pet population over the age of 2 years. The first examination will require radiographs (x-rays) of all of the teeth in the mouth, looking for underlying disease, or problems in development/eruption of adult teeth. After the initial evaluation, radiographs will be needed at follow-up visits only when necessary based on the level of periodontal disease. Once the teeth are thoroughly cleaned, daily toothbrushing can be started at home.