We love our pets and often wish that they could live forever. While we have yet to find a magic elixir to extend their lives indefinitely, there are many ways of helping your pet to have as long, healthy, and happy a life as possible.

Yearly physical exams can help your veterinarian to pick up on subtle changes in your pet and give you the help to adjust their diet, exercise, supplements, and lifestyle to fit your furry one’s needs. We also recommend 6 month wellness exams for all of our senior pets. Just like with humans, as our pets age, they are more likely to develop concerns more quickly. So much can happen in a year.

During your pet’s wellness visit, the veterinarian performs a full exam, listening to their heart and lungs, feeling all over for any new lumps and bumps, performing an oral exam (pets get dental disease, too!), watching them move around, and tuning into any little discomfort your pet may be experiencing.

In order to give a more complete picture of the internal health of your pet (the part we can’t see during that physical exam), regular lab screening is recommended. A full blood panel reflects the health of the organs, such as the kidneys and liver and all of the blood cells. Tick and heartworm screening ensures that any diseases passed to your pet by mosquitoes or ticks can be treated. Lyme disease is so common in the northeast now, and sometimes can infect your pet without showing any outward signs! Urine testing screens for urinary tract infections and provides even more information about the health of the kidneys. Finally, fecal testing screens for intestinal parasites that can make your pet sick. Some intestinal parasites can even be passed to people, particularly children.

At Lake Road Animal Hospital, our team is dedicated to giving your pets the best care. We enjoy seeing them on a regular basis and helping them to enjoy life together with you for as long as possible. If you ever have concerns about your pet’s health and comfort, please reach out to our team. We are always happy to help you provide the best care for your furry family, at every stage of your pet’s life.

Written by Rebecca Burns, LVT