A wellness exam is like your own annual checkup that helps to keep you healthy by finding small problems before they become larger issues. It's important not to wait until your dog or cat is not feeling well before you take them to the veterinarian. During the wellness visit your pet's weight, temperature, heart rate and respirations will be checked as well as the eyes, ears, nose, throat and other organs for any abnormalities. Part of wellness care includes making sure your pet has the vaccinations they need in order to stay healthy and comply with local laws. These visits are also a good time to discuss any concerns you may have about your pet's health or behavior so your pet can enjoy a long and happy life.
How often does my pet need a wellness exam?
Many aspects of your pet's health can change in a short amount of time so make sure your pet receives regular checkups.
Similar to people, pets need to visit the veterinarian more often as they get older in order to prevent and treat illnesses that come with age. Healthy dogs and cats should visit the veterinarian once a year for a complete exam and laboratory testing. Healthy senior dogs and cats should receive a wellness exam and lab testing every six months. Depending on your pet's age and health, our veterinarian will suggest an appropriate physical examination schedule to help keep your pet in tip-top shape.
We thoroughly encourage annual wellness visits. Our professional team will evaluate the needs, risks and rewards of each pet individually when recommending a vaccination protocol, de-worming regimen or appropriate diet, etc.
Yearly physical exams are important for every dog and cat. Most pets are very good at hiding their illnesses. This means they may not show physical signs that something is wrong. It is always easier on your pet to start preventative care early. This is where physical exams come into play. We want to make sure that your pet is not gaining or losing too much weight. Equally important is to make sure the heart sounds good, the eyes,ears, nose and throat look good and all the organs feel or sound normal. The doctor will also be looking at and feeling the skin for any lumps, bumps or parasites.
What can you expect during my pet's wellness examination?
Our veterinarian will generally request a complete history of your pet's health. Don't forget to mention any unusual symptoms that you may have noticed in your pet, including:
- Eating more or less than usual
- Excessive drinking of water, urination, panting or scratching.
- Weight gain or weight loss
Our veterinarian will also want to know about your pet's daily behavior, including his diet, how much water he drinks and his exercise routine.
Common questions may be:
Does your pet have trouble getting up in the morning?
Does your pet show signs of weakness or lack of coordination?
Does your pet show an unwillingness to exercise?
Depending on where you live, your pet's lifestyle and age, our veterinarian may also ask questions to determine your pet's risk of fleas, ticks, heartworms and intestinal parasites. The doctor will then prescribe an individualized treatment or preventive plan to address these issues.