Pets usually require more frequent health check-ups than their owners. This is down to a few factors, such as the quicker aging of animals (a year is a lot longer for a cat or dog’s body than a human’s) and also because they can’t fully communicate any issues or discomfort they might be feeling. There are a number of common ailments that can be treated or managed if detected early which makes regular pet health check-ups vital for your pet’s long-term good health and quality of life.
Reasons why your pet needs regular health checks:
- Eyes: An examination of your pets eyes can reveal a lot about their health and wellbeing. We look out for reactions by the pupils, range of eye movement, discolouration, and signs of discomfort or weeping caused by issues like entropion.We also can examine the structures in the back of your pets eye such as the retina and optic nerve. Dogs with excessive skin folds, such as basset hounds or St. Bernard’s, can be particularly susceptible to eye issues.
- Skin and coat: Your pet losing hair could be a sign of numerous issues such as an allergy/intolerance, infection or illness, particularly issues with the endocrine system. They may also be suffering from high stress or anxiety. Parasitic infection can also result in coat changes and hair loss. The health of your pets skin in important to their overall health, during consultations we can investigate any issues we may notice with the health of your pets skin or coat.
- Lumps: An examination of your pet can reveal any external lumps or bumps which may be harmless or may be indicate a more serious illness. Internal lumps can only be investigated through x-rays, ultrasounds, blood tests, or biopsied, all of which we provide at our state-of-the-art facilities. On occasion we may need to refer your pet to a specialist centre for advanced imaging such as CT or MRI
- Teeth and gums: Pets can suffer from a number of oral hygiene issues, including lost teeth and swollen or bleeding gums. An accumulation of high levels of bacteria due to advanced dental disease can result in issues with your pets overall health. A pet health check will include investigating your pet’s mouth for common dental issues.
- General mood and appetite: Issues with your pets health can often be identified through a change in your pet’s mood, such as them being lethargic at home, have less or more appetite than usual, or appearing sad or subdued.
- Feet and movement: Throughout their lives pets may develop issues with their joints as a result of aging, genetics or trauma. We frequently see issues with the nails of your pets such as overgrowth, fractures, infections, these can be investigated during Pets may also develop a limp, difficulty in walking up or down steps or have started to lick their joints, stiffness or slow to get out of bed all of which may indicate discomfort.
How a Pet Health Check Works
A regular routine pet health check-up can help to identify many conditions before they become more serious and ensure your pet is not silently living with discomfort. A routine pet health check will take up to 15 minutes and our vets will assess your pet’s status for the above issues and identify if there is any need for follow-up action.
A veterinary health check also allows us to set a baseline from which future changes in your pet’s condition can be monitored, so having a history of health checks makes it easier to catch changes and potential future problems.