What to Expect During Your Pet’s Annual Exam

Routine wellness visits are a great way to help your pet live a healthy life for as long as possible. These visits can also help to catch potential health issues earlier and may help you avoid additional costs associated with treatments if disease goes undetected.

 A typical wellness visit might include:

 A physical exam

Veterinarians look for changes in your pet’s teeth, weight, joints, skin, and ears. These changes may be signs of illness.

Diagnostic screening tests

Veterinarians check your pet’s internal health. These results help to manage and track your pet’s overall health.

A review of results

Veterinarians look for changes in results from year-to-year. Changes can act as early warning signs of health problems.

 

WHAT WE LOOK AT DURING A VISIT AND WHY

 

HEART AND LUNGS

Infection or disease can make it difficult for your pet’s heart and lungs to deliver enough oxygen-rich blood to the body.

 

LIVER

Your pet’s liver may have trouble managing proteins, fat, digestion, and waste. These problems could be caused by disease, a blockage or even medication.

 

PANCREAS AND INTESTINE

Problems with these digestive organs may be due to an inflamed pancreas, diabetes, or some types of cancers.

 

KIDNEYS

SDMA* testing detects kidney disease earlier than other types of kidney tests.1,2 Results also reflect other diseases your pet may have that affect the kidneys.3

 

THYROID

If the thyroid glands aren’t releasing the right amount of hormones, your pet’s metabolism could be affected.

 

BLOOD

A complete blood count (CBC) tells us if your pet is fighting an infection or has some bleeding problems. A blood test can also find diseases spread by ticks and mosquitoes.

 

URINE

Urine tests tell us if your pet has problems like infection or stones in the kidneys or bladder. They can also tell us about some cancers.

 

FECES

Fecal antigen testing tells us if your pet has parasites, such as worms. Other types of fecal tests may miss these common causes of intestinal infections, which can cause problems in people, too.

 

*Symmetric dimethylarginine.

 

Schedule your pet’s next wellness visit today!

 

References

1. Hall JA, Yerramilli M, Obare E, Yerramilli M, Jewell DE. Comparison of serum concentrations of symmetric dimethylarginine and creatinine as kidney function biomarkers in cats with chronic kidney disease. J Vet Intern Med. 2014;28(6):1676–1683.

2. Hall JA, Yerramilli M, Obare E, Yerramilli M, Almes K, Jewell DE. Serum concentrations of symmetric dimethylarginine and creatinine in dogs with naturally occurring chronic kidney disease. J Vet Intern Med. 2016;30(3):794–802.

3. Data on file at IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. Westbrook, Maine USA.

Reviewed on: 
Monday, June 22, 2020

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