Every ask yourself – How old is my Pet in Human Years?
Pets age 5-7 times as quickly as we do. In fact, by age two most dogs and cats have reached adulthood. Today, most aspects of veterinary medicine are geared toward preventative care. It is our goal as your pet’s vet to provide our patients with the longest and highest quality of life possible and this is best achieved by twice yearly wellness exams and diagnostic screenings.
As pets age, wellness visits become even more crucial because changes begin occurring at a more rapid pace. When we combine diagnostic lab work with a six month wellness examination, kidney and liver disease, anemia and other internal problems can be discovered before any clinical symptoms appear. Regular wellness exams and wellness blood work can sometimes prove to be a life saver for pets. Our goal is to identify or prevent medical conditions early before they become major and more costly problems.
In general, pets 7 years of age or older are considered senior pets and will require more frequent visits to their veterinarian. Preventative veterinary care, better nutrition, new diagnostics, and pharmaceuticals are helping our pets live longer than they were just a few decades ago. Although senior pets may not have the energy of their youth, they still have plenty of love and companionship to offer.
As our pets age they experience many of the changes we experience in our golden years. However, they are poorly adapted to be able to tell us when they feel something is wrong. Loss of hearing, loss of vision, trouble getting up/down stairs, not eating as well; these are ways that your pets show that they are in pain or discomfort. The good news is we can help!
So what exactly does Senior Wellness entail? A full Senior Wellness Evaluation includes: full physical exam, bloodwork, urinalysis, blood pressure, eye pressures, and full body radiographs. All of these tests give us great information on what is going on with your pet and help us recommend any treatments and/or therapies your pet may need.
Anacapa Animal Hospital Senior Veterinary Wellness Recommendations:
Thorough examination of your pet’s eyes, ears, nose, mouth, teeth, skin; evaluate heart and lungs sounds; palpate their abdomen, thyroid gland, lymph nodes; screen for lumps and bumps; discuss nutritional needs.
A chemistry panel to test kidney and liver function, and electrolyte levels and more. A CBC to screen for anemia, clotting disorders, infection, inflammation, etc. Thyroid screen to check for hyper- or hypothyroidism. A urinalysis to screen for infections, further evaluate kidney function, and other metabolic derangements.
Hypertension and glaucoma can be found in older pets. Early detection can help prevent serious and sometimes irreversible blindness and/or organ damage.
Diagnostic x-ray and/or ultrasound can evaluate your pet’s heart and other organs for abnormal size, signs of primary cancer and metastatic disease.
The Senior Wellness Evaluation is a very thorough physical exam both inside and out. If your pet has a current underlying problem, we are sure to find it and help you and your pet manage it.
If your pet is a senior and has not received a comprehensive exam within the last 6 months we encourage you to schedule an appointment. Help your pet live a longer, happier, healthier life!