Yearly consultation and examination
An annual consultation with your veterinarian includes a physical examination which is a vital part of maintaining a healthy, happy, and long life for your companion. Your veterinarian will palpate the abdomen in order to determine whether liver and kidney size is normal, and to rule out any discomfort or masses. They examine the mouth and teeth to determine whether or not your pet could benefit from a dental cleaning or extractions. They make certain there are no heart murmurs or arrhythmias by listening to his heart. They listen to his lungs in case there are abnormal sounds. They evaluate the range of motion of your pet’s legs in case there are signs of arthritis or hip dysplasia. The examination of lymph nodes is performed to help identify inflammation or infection. A dermatologic evaluation is also important in diagnosing allergies, infections or masses. Your vet will pay close attention to your pet’s weight and eating habits to make sure he stays in a healthy range. Weight gain eventually leads to obesity and weigh loss can indicate an underlying disease.
Once your pet is considered to be geriatric (around 7 years and older), an annual physical examination becomes even more important. A geriatric panel is a diagnostic tool that your veterinarian uses to assess your pet’s overall health. This panel can be used when a pet is ill to help your veterinarian determine the cause of the illness or it can also be used when a pet is otherwise healthy in order to help detect early illness/disease before noticeable symptoms become apparent.
Your veterinarian’s primary goal is to keep your pets happy and healthy. By finding, diagnosing, and treating any potential problems early, your pet will live a much longer and healthier life.