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The Importance Of Dog Wellness Exams


It is very important to have a veterinarian examine your dog at least once a year. Dogs age significantly faster than humans and therefore it is imperative for dog owners to stay on top of wellness exams in order to catch any potential health problems before they begin. Most dog illnesses are much easier and less expensive to treat and cure when caught in the early stages before they progress or develop complications. Therefore, regular dog wellness exams are the cornerstone of preventive veterinary medicine.

Dogs are good at hiding any type of illness, by being quiet and hiding, You may not be fully aware that something is wrong since dogs can be experts at hiding pain or discomfort.

As a dog owner, you should be aware of any changes in eating habits, playfulness, and general overall health. If you notice any changes in behavior, such as a change in eating habits, not greeting you the way they normally would, reluctance to jump up or move around the way they typically would… these are the subtle signs of what could be a serious health problem, and it is time to schedule a veterinary exam.

At Veterinary Village, we recommend performing basic lab tests at least once a year, as well as reviewing nutrition and any behavioral issues you may be noticing.

What Is Involved In A Dog Wellness Exam?

A wellness exam is the perfect time to discuss your dog’s daily habits, diet, and any problems you may have noticed. Our staff is specifically trained to make your dog feel comfortable to reduce stress and so that we can perform a thorough examination. During this time we will talk with you about your dog’s daily routine, and if you have noticed anything out of the ordinary. Your vet will discuss the following topics with you:

  • The appropriate food and weight for your dog
  • Behavioral issues
  • Daily water consumption
  • Your dog’s stool production
  • The amount of activity your dog gets daily
  • Whether or not your dog is alert and content

Dogs should have a thorough dental cleaning around age 4. We will do a dental exam and look for any abnormalities in the mouth. However, make no mistake, dental issues are painful and seriously affect the quality of life.

At Veterinary Village we assess the body condition of the dog, and determine if he is the correct weight. A wellness exam also includes palpating the abdomen for organ size making sure that all is normal and checking for any lumps or bumps. We will also collect urine and blood samples for yearly labs. Preventative care is extremely important, along with vaccines, parasite control and deworming.

This is the time to bring up any issues you are not sure about. If you notice that your dog coughs a lot, has had changes in eating or bathroom habits, then mention this to your vet.

How Often Should Dogs Be Examined?

Your dog should be examined at least once per year. You may not be aware that your dog is not feeling well, and it’s better to stay one step ahead of any potential medical issues. Older or geriatric dogs should have a semi-annual (twice yearly) wellness exam.

Why Might Additional Tests Be Recommended?

Dogs age much quicker than we do, so doing yearly labs are advised. Dogs can be prone to kidney disease a condition we see quite often. If we can catch the kidney disease early, we may be able to change their diet to control or reverse it to improve their quality of life. We will also check your dog for intestinal parasites by checking a stool sample. Depending on the condition of your dog, any symptoms you have noticed, concerns you have or test results, diagnostic imaging may also be recommended when appropriate to provide our doctors with the information necessary to make an accurate diagnosis and come to a recommendation for treatment.

Schedule A Wellness Exam For Your Dog

At Veterinary Village, our veterinary staff is here to ensure that your dog is able to enjoy a long and healthy life as your companion. Contact us today to make a dog wellness exam appointment with one of our veterinarians. You can reach us now at: (920) 269-4072

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