Heartworm disease can have a devastating effect on your pet's health. National Heartworm Awareness Month, observed annually in April, reminds pet owners about the health dangers this preventable d ...View Article
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The best way to keep your pet happy and healthy is to bring it to our office for regular pet wellness exams. Like human beings, pets can develop health problems that can only be found with a medical examination. Catching these problems early means that our Cary veterinarian can treat your pet while the disease hasn't progressed, making it easier to cure. At Chatham Animal Hospital we recommend wellness exams for puppies and kittens, adult pets, and senior dogs and cats. Each stage of life requires exams on a different schedule, but almost all visits will include the same procedures.
Each wellness examination begins with a physical check of your pet's body. We'll look for rashes and other skin conditions, as well as fleas, mites and other parasites that can affect your pet's health and comfort. Once we've checked the skin and coat, our veterinarian will move on to your pet's mouth. Red gums, swollen tongue or extremely bad breath can be a sign of internal disease in dogs and cats, often before any other symptom makes itself known. We'll check for loose or missing teeth and any other sores in your pet's mouth that can affect its eating habits and nutrition. When our vet has thoroughly examined your pet's mouth, he'll move on to examining the rest of its body, such as the ears, its height and weight and the pads
of its feet.
One of the most important components of a pet wellness examination at Chatham Animal Hospital here in Cary are immunizations against infectious disease formulate to prevent your pet from catching dangerous and deadly diseases. Vaccines are place in two categories for both cats and dogs: core and non-core. Core vaccines are those that every pet needs to receive on a regular basis. At Chatham Animal Hospital we believe Rabies, distemper/parvo combination and Bordetella are core vaccinations for dogs while rabies and distemper/upper respiratory vaccines are core for cats.
Non-core vaccines, on the other hand, are given based on relative risk according to their age, lifestyle and environment. For dogs these include Lyme, Leptospirosis, and both active forms of Canine Influenza. For cats, feline leukemia vaccination is recommended for all kittens continuing until between 3 and 5 years of age, life- long if the kitty enjoys time outdoors.
The frequency of your pet's wellness exams will change based on age and condition. Puppies and kittens visit two to four times between 6 and 20 weeks. When influenza is given it is started at the end of the core vaccine puppy series or at their Juvenile visit which is usually around 10 months of age. In most instances we will start Leptospirosis and Lyme vaccination at the 10 month visit in those that are likely to benefit from them. Frequency of visits for adults may vary but in general most adult dogs should be seen twice yearly after their Young Adult visit and cats once yearly.
Set Up Your First Appointment Today! Regardless of your pet's age, regular pet wellness exams are the key to it living a healthy life. Call our office at (919) 469-8114 to make an appointment today.