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These are some of the commonly asked questions our clients have
 
Q: Why do you recommend yearly blood work for my pet even though they appear young and healthy?
 
A: Our pets are animals and they are naturally able to hide their illnesses to be able to survive in the wild and not become prey. The pet may appear completely normal on physical exam but have the beginnings of kidney or liver disease and maybe even something more serious, that we would never know about without blood work. The reason we want to do this yearly is because a lot can change in your pet in a year, remember that is like seven years for us. We also do this to establish a base line of health so that if your pet becomes sick we can see how bad the illness is when we compare it to the healthy values.
 
Q: Why does my pet need a urine sample?
 
A: Many pets have low level kidney or bladder infection. These may be caused by dietary crystals and if we catch this early enough we may be able to prevent bladder stone formation.
 
Q: Why does my pet need a dental cleaning?
 
A: The build up of dental calculus (tartar) is very harmful to your pet. When your pet has hard build up little pieces break off and are swallowed. This causes the bacteria to get into your pets blood stream and build up eventually causing organ failure. The reason that we want to do full mouth radiographs on your pet is to determine if there is any hidden disease under the gums that causes bone loss and severe pain.
 
Q: What are all these vaccines for?
 
A: The reason that we vaccinate your pet is to protect them from potentially deadly diseases that in some cases can be transmitted to humans. Recent studies have shown that rabies and distemper vaccines can be given every three years in dogs over the age of 4, in adult dogs that have been consistently vaccinated. The distemper vaccine in cats can be given every three years as well.
 
Dogs
Rabies: A virus that infects the neurological system that is fatal and transmissible to humans.
Distemper: A virus that causes fever, nasal discharge, coughing, lethargy, reduced appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea. In later stages, the virus may attack the nervous system.
Lepto: A bacterial spirochete that causes multi organ failure, and is transmissible to humans.
Parvo: Canine parvovirus causes lethargy; loss of appetite; fever; vomiting; and severe, often bloody, diarrhea.
Bordetella: (Kennel Cough) an upper respiratory infection.
 
Cats
Rabies: A virus that infects the neurological system that is fatal and transmissible to humans.
Feline distemper: A virus causing sneezing, nasal discharge, rhinitis (inflammation of the nose), and conjunctivitis (inflammation of the membrane lining the eyelid).
Feline Leukemia: A virus that causes immune suppression.
 
Q: Why do you want to examine our pet every 6 months?
 
A: The reason for this is because our pets age faster than we do. If a dog basically ages 7 years to our one year, then by seeing them every 6 months we are really in fact only seeing them every 3 ½ years. In fact, when placed in that perspective, your pet probably sees us much less than you see your doctor. A lot can change in the body in 3 ½ years.
 
Q: Why do you check a fecal sample and de-worm my pet with every wellness exam?
 
A: The reason we do this is to protect the health of you and your pet. Many of the intestinal parasites that your pet can get will infect humans as well; we also do this because the CDC recommends it. Remember that it is important to thoroughly wash your hands after handling your pet’s feces
 
Q: Why do you recommend yearly heartworm testing for my dog?
 
A: Heartworms are transmitted to your pet by the female mosquito when she feeds. They enter the bloodstream and when they reach the adult stage they will set up residence in your pet’s heart and lungs causing severe respiratory issues and even death. That is why it is important to test yearly and use prevention every month. Cats can also get heartworms and recent studies show that we should be using a monthly preventative on them as well.
 
Q: Why do you recommend a senior wellness exam for my 8 year old pet?
 
A: Eight is when we consider your pet to be geriatric and we want to insure that your pet gets the best care in the senior years so that you are able to have them for a long time. We also want to catch any issues that might be brewing and are treatable if detected early.We recommend the following for our senior patients: Yearly blood work to check organ function, blood glucose and thyroid levels. Yearly urine tests to check for urinary crystals and diabetes. Blood pressure to check for hypertension which can cause blindness in cats. Chest x- rays to make sure your pets heart and lungs are functioning properly and that there is no sign of disease. Electrocardiogram (ECG): Like a stress test for you this lets us know that your pet is not having any cardiac arrhythmias that can be fatal. In conclusion your pet’s health is our top concern and we want to make sure that you are informed and empowered to make the proper decisions for your pet’s health. If you as our client ever have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask our staff.

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