Just like people, pets need regular medical check-ups every year, when they aren’t feeling well and when they have a health condition…the only difference is they get treats when they do!
Cats, dogs and even birds, rabbits, guinea pigs and other small pets should see a veterinarian (a doctor for animals) for an exam annually, starting when they are born, all the way through their senior years. The pet will also receive appropriate vaccinations to protect them from diseases, and some will have a blood test.
Monitoring many aspects of a pet’s health will allow a veterinarian to discover any problems now and in the future.
SOME THINGS VETERINARIANS CHECK DURING AN EXAM
- Fur condition
Some pets require specialists. Again, just like for people, there are special veterinarians for pets for their eyes, heart, bones, skin and more. Specialists may help diagnose and treat pets with skin and food allergies, as well as eyesight, limb or heart problems, just to name a few conditions. A veterinary specialist determines which tests, medicine and food may allow a pet to have a healthier, happier and longer life.
It’s important to know that some veterinary offices can’t see all types of pets. For example, birds and rabbits are considered “exotic” pets, so not all veterinarians can provide their care—families must find veterinarians who are specially trained in their health.
At times, pets also need surgery. It could be to remove lumps and bumps, or to remove something from their stomach that shouldn’t be there, like a toy they’ve eaten.
And did you think humans were the only ones seeing the dentist? Dental care is important for pets, too! They need their teeth cleaned just like people, and when they have rotting or broken teeth, they have them removed. This is all done while under anesthesia because we all know pets wouldn’t be able to sit still while their mouths are examined!
CONDITIONS BOTH HUMANS AND PETS CAN GET
- Bladder stones
- Upset stomach
- Food allergies
- Skin allergies
So, remember to take your pet to the veterinarian on a regular basis—doctor’s orders!