September - Preventative Care Month
Preventative care for your pet is the best medicine yet! Did you know that there are a number of diseases that we have the ability to treat if caught early? It is important that your pet receive preventative care so that they may enjoy a long, quality lifetime with you!
Below are some prevention tips to improve your pet’s quality of life!
1. Keep their weight trim. Carrying extra weight around is a tremendous burden and a strain on joints, heart and blood sugar control. It is important to exercise your pet.
2. Take your pet at least once yearly to your veterinarian for a complete health examination and blood work, called a CBC (Complete Blood Count) and Chemistry Profile (evaluates your pet's organs). Be pro-active with your pet's healthcare. It is best for all to uncover problems early so that we can try to correct or adjust our veterinary care as quickly as possible. In addition, pets are extremely stoic and do not easily show pain or distress until they are fairly sick (especially cats).
3. Feed your pet a quality diet that is nutritious and balanced. I know clients feel good about giving their pets treats and food from the table, but those "table treats" add up in calories and are not necessary for pets' well-being.
4. Help your pet move more gracefully and comfortably. If you see your dog having difficulties climbing up stairs or walking around the block, trembling, stiffness when getting up from rest, or slipping on the floors, schedule an appointment today. If your cat is having difficulties jumping onto counter tops or onto furniture, this is a sign that your pet may be suffering from arthritis. There is no reason for pets to silently suffer in pain today. There are products that can really increase your pet's quality of life.
6. Routine dental care. Dental disease is a tremendous source of pain and discomfort for your pet. In addition, the bacteria in the oral cavity can enter the blood stream and aggravate your pet's heart, kidney or liver. Despite home dental care, it is recommended at least once yearly to have your pet's teeth professionally cleaned and evaluated under general anesthesia. Regrettably, 70 percent of all dental pathology is beneath the gum line and not visible to eye.
7. Watch for signs of pain -- for pet's it can be very difficult to assess. The obvious signs of pain are dull attitude, loss of appetite, decreased ambulation or limping and crying out. The more subtle signs may be restlessness -- just unable to sleep or lay in one position for an extended time period-, decreased grooming (especially for cats), panting, quiet behavior, depressed appetite, salivation, less interactive, changes in water intake, not interested in being petted or weight loss.
8. Pet your pet! Check for lumps and bumps that just don't belong there. If you discover one, call us. Hopefully it's nothing significant, like a fatty tumor, called a Lipoma, which is quite common in older pets. If it is something significant, the good news is that you may have caught it early and it can be surgically or medically addressed as soon as possible giving your pet the greatest chance of a successful outcome.
9. Keep vaccinations and annual testing up to date – Keep up to date on your pet’s routine vaccinations and have heartworm and fecal testing performed annually. Be sure to keep your pet on monthly heartworm/intestinal parasite preventatives year round.
10. Contact us if you notice anything abnormal with your pet - drinking more water than normal, urinary issues, behavior issues, or anything at all please let us know!