Preventive veterinary care is the cornerstone of keeping your pet their healthiest so that you and your pet can have more great years together. Since pets age more quickly than people do, it is critical to have regular physical examinations every 6-12 months to assess your pet’s health. During routine preventive exams, your veterinarian will do a nose to tail examination assessing:
- Overall body condition
- Heart and lungs
- Abdominal organs
- Musculoskeletal system
- Neurologic system
- Lymph nodes
Annual age-appropriate lab tests, testing for heartworm and/or tick-borne diseases, and fecal tests for parasites may also be recommended for your pet. Your pet’s nutrition, diet, and exercise routines can be assessed and optimized to help your pet be in best physical condition for their lifestyle and age.
When health problems are identified, a treatment plan will be outlined to evaluate the problems in depth. If your pet appears to be healthy enough for routine preventive care, your veterinarian will discuss which immunizations are advised, as well as parasite prevention including heartworm, intestinal parasites, and ectoparasites (fleas, ticks, etc.).
Remember, keeping up with preventive care for your pet is the best way to keep your pet happy and healthy for life.