If you own or have had a dog for many years, you understand how wonderful they are as pets for the family. It’s fun to help your dog develop with training and playtime. In most cases, we consider our dogs part of the family, which means that we do all we can to keep them healthy and happy.
Your dog cannot tell you when something isn’t right, and although it may display some symptoms, there are many diseases and illnesses that don’t necessarily alert you to bring your dog to a vet right away. Regular and routine visits to your veterinarian are an essential part of your dog’s health.
Being a responsible dog owner means caring for your furry friend’s well-being and overall health. Here we will break down what happens during a routine vet visit and why they are so beneficial to keep your dog’s health in check.
The Routine Vet Visit
Veterinarians and technicians, like those at Williamsburg hospital, Bond Vet, are trained to thoroughly examine your dog and check for any signs of poor health. Usually, routine visits involve most (or all) of the following procedures:
- Looking at their eyes, ears, nose, and mouth for any signs of infection
- Taking vital signs that include heart rate and respiration (listening to lungs)
- Check their skin, paws, and fur for allergies, mange, bumps, parasites, etc.
- Listening to the heart for cardiovascular health
- Feeling the skin around the abdomen and other joints and muscles in case of any swelling, bumps, or arthritis
Your vet will have questions for you regarding your dog’s temperament, eating habits, exercise, and bathroom frequency. Many of these questions help the vet determine if anything needs to be looked at further, but it can also be helpful for you to address any concerns.
Your vet could recommend more procedures if your dog is older or of a specific breed prone to certain diseases or illnesses. These involve a bit more invasiveness and can consist of issuing vaccines, obtaining blood work, or a urinalysis.
How Routine Vet Visits are Beneficial
Now that you’re aware of all that goes on during a routine visit, you can understand the benefits that they can do for your dog. Regular checkups are helpful for your dog in many ways, but here are some of the more common and vital benefits.
Regularly monitoring your dog’s health allows early detection of an illness or health issue. Your vet will know how your dog’s health has been, so it will be apparent if there are any significant changes.
Potential problems that are caught early with your dog’s health can lead to a faster diagnosis and treatment plan. If your dog can get help sooner, there’s a higher chance of recovery.
Dogs, like humans, tend to suffer from obesity. In fact, in more recent years, a whopping 56% of dogs are classified as overweight or obese. Obesity can also be a gateway for your pup to suffer from more severe health complications like arthritis, joint pain, and other inflammatory problems.
Regular checkups ensure your vet can assess your dog’s weight and determine if it is in a healthy range. You must be honest with your vet about your dog’s current food and physical activity. They can work with you and develop a plan for nutrition and an exercise regime to follow.
Prevention of Parasites
Common parasites like heartworms, fleas, or ticks tend to occur in and on dogs. Your vet can quickly provide measures to deter and protect your pet to keep those parasites away with regular checkups.
Ensure you follow the instructions for administering medications or other instructions from your vet when dealing with parasites. There are some natural or over-the-counter treatments your vet may also recommend, or you may ask about if you want to use them. With the prevention of parasites, it can also be beneficial for you as the owner, not just your dog – since parasites can occur in humans too.
Vaccines for your dog are crucial in keeping serious diseases away, which can include:
These are considered core vaccines for your furry friend. Vets could also recommend non-core vaccines depending on your dog’s risk for them. Leptospira vaccine, for example, would be suitable for any dog that goes hiking or hunting and spends time in marshy, muddy, or swampy locations.
Keep Your Dog Healthy With Routine Checkups
If at any point you have concerns about your dog’s health, it’s crucial to contact or go and see your vet as soon as possible. Otherwise, with routine vet visits, you can ensure your dog gets the proper care to stay healthy and happy for years to come!