Even if your pet seems healthy, the fact is dogs and cats instinctively hide symptoms of illness and injury–so those signals are easy to miss. There are also some life-threatening conditions that have no symptoms at all until they are very advanced. That’s why we highly recommend annual exams and health screenings for all adult pets.
At a wellness exam, we will assess your pet’s physical health from nose to tail and perform a diagnostic work-up, which includes blood, fecal, and urine screenings.
Plus, vaccinating your pet is a relatively inexpensive but essential way to protect his or her health. In addition to preventing many life-threatening illnesses, vaccinations can prevent diseases prevalent in wildlife and those that can be passed to humans. It’s important to administer vaccinations when pets are puppies and kittens because their young immune systems are still developing and need protection to stay healthy.
Our veterinarians can advise you which vaccinations are required or recommended for your pet based on age, health, and lifestyle. Make sure your pet is protected–call us at (502) 587-6677 or make an appointment online today
Senior Wellness Care
Did you know that most dogs are considered seniors when they hit seven? For cats, it’s around nine. Pets age much more rapidly than humans, which means diseases and illnesses progress more quickly as well.
To make sure your pet has the longest, healthiest, most comfortable life possible, Blue Cross Animal Hospital encourages you to bring your senior pet for exams and blood tests twice each year. This way, we can track how your pet is aging, and we’ll be more likely to catch any developing diseases before they’re big problems.
Blood tests are one of the most important parts of a senior exam. These blood screenings—often referred to as a senior panel— monitor red and white blood cell counts and reveal how well the kidney, liver, pancreas, and thyroid are functioning. We may recommend a chest x-ray to ensure that the heart is a normal size and that there are no masses in the lungs.
Periodontal disease is a threat to our pets’ health and comfort, and it’s particularly tough on older pets. That’s why a dental exam is always part of any senior pet screening as well.
One of the most common conditions seen in elder pets is osteoarthritis. General symptoms in dogs include limping, spinal issues like a hunch or a back that is sensitive to touch, tiredness, loss of muscle and constant licking, chewing or biting sensitive areas. In cats, the symptoms may be more subtle, but usually a reluctance to jump or leap up as before is a tell-tale sign. We can help your arthritic pet feel more comfortable utilizing a variety of treatments including medication and physical therapy.
Finally, make sure to let us know about any behavior changes in your pet. Once dogs and cat get to the geriatric stage, monitoring for signs of cognitive dysfunction—such as accidents, getting lost or wandering aimlessly—is very important.