Franklin Vets - excellence in veterinary care for dairy, farming, lifestyle, equine and household pets. BESTPRACTICE ACCREDITED NZ.
Feed good, wholesome food for a start. Access to clean fresh water. Shelter from the elements. Lots of TLC and mental stimulation with toys and interesting places to visit. Plenty of exercise.
What can we do as a profession to help?
There are basically three parts to what vets can do here.
Yup. that old horse chestnut. Parvovirus is still very much around and kills large numbers of dogs every year. Some of you may not realise that there is a feline form of this disease (which is actually the original virus, not the dog version) which is just as unpleasant. Vaccines are essential to prevent this diseases, together with other nasties such as distemper virus, hepatitis virus, feline influenza…
It is simply amazing what we find when we do a detailed physical examination. Owners will miss things in their own pets because they may not be aware of the significance. Some physical tests are not something ever done at home (prostate check anyone?). Every animal should be checked every year, and as they reach middle age (around 6 years old) this should move up to every 6 months.
This is regular blood, urine and faecal testing to see if there is something going on that is not yet showing itself physically. There are lots of studies out there now showing the benefits of regular testing of blood, urine and faeces. Even young animals can benefit. It has been shown that up to 10% of cats at the age of 1 year have had abnormalities found on regular testing. As the patient gets older, just like us things start to go wrong more frequently. 40% of animals in their senior years that their owners were convinced were healthy had abnormalities found on their regular screening tests.
Detecting problems early gives us a much better chance of being able to do something about it. It is very depressing to see cases of advanced disease that we wish we had seen a year earlier.
Faecal testing of your pet is recommended to check that your parasite control programme is working.
Having a set of normal results for these tests is a cause for celebration. It provides a benchmark of what is normal for that patient.
We have researched the options available for getting a very thorough set of tests carried out, at a price most people can afford. This means the samples are sent away to an external laboratory, which puts a delay of about a week on obtaining all the results, so it is not suitable for diagnostic testing an unwell animal. But for routine screening of animals that are physically well, it is ideal, and a great way to check out the health of your best friend.
We can take preventive care test samples at any time your pet is in for an examination, so combining it with annual vaccination is a good option. Alternatively, and especially for older pets, book in for a 6 monthly check-up examination halfway between two vaccinations, and request preventive care testing then. Have a read around the benefits on our website and make an informed decision.
We can provide bottles for collecting faecal samples to bring in on the day or a few days later. We will take the urine that day as well as the blood, and contact you with the results as soon as they return.