To help your pet enjoy the great outdoors, you should schedule a spring check-up with your veterinarian to make sure your pet is ready to ward off the newest crop of ticks, heartworm-causing mosquitoes and other parasites.
The veterinarians at Idexx Laboratories recommend the following Pet Tips to help you make the most of your furry friend’s check-up.
You are the one who cares for your pet each day. Although your veterinarian is the expert, you are more likely to notice any subtle changes in your pet’s behavior or physical abilities.
Know your pet’s habits so you can question the veterinarian about noticeable changes in your pet’s weight, appetite, water consumption, coat or skin, behavior or mobility. Compile a list of questions and “things to do” in advance.
Check your pet before your visit by looking and feeling for any noticeable bumps or lumps. Talk to your veterinarian about what you notice.
Regular blood and urine testing are two of the most important steps to keeping your pet healthy and can diagnose diseases in their earliest and most treatable stages. A simple and easy test can detect seasonal threats such as Lyme disease, heartworm and ehrlichiosis.
Schedule a dental exam and routine cleaning. Learn how to brush your dog’s teeth if you don’t do so already. This is not only beneficial for your pet, but it also helps reduce “dog breath.” As with humans, a bit of regular prevention goes a long way.
Plan to vaccinate your dog against diseases prevalent in your area. Your veterinarian can advise you about new vaccines and the vaccinations required by law in your state.
As the temperature rises, so do the number of parasites. Test for tick-borne diseases and heartworm with quick and easy in-clinic tests. Talk to your veterinarian about possible prevention or protection strategies. Effective treatments and medications are available.
Schedule any follow-up visits recommended by your veterinarian immediately following your pet’s check-up. If you have a senior pet (age seven or older), visit the veterinarian at least twice a year for a senior check-up to stay in tune with changes in your pet’s health.
Pets generally age faster than humans, so more frequent senior checkups to the veterinarian are important to catch problems early. Remember to routinely test for ticks, heartworm and other deadly diseases at each visit.
By following these simple guidelines and following the advice of your veterinarian, your pet should be ready for a healthy season.