Preventative Care Exams: When your pet is examined by one of our doctors for their six month and annual checkup they will receive a complete nose to tail exam. Eyes, ears, nose, mouth, teeth, heart, lungs, abdomen, skin, legs and toenails all get a thorough examination. As humans we generally see our doctor once a year, our pets’ age more quickly. One year in the life of a dog is approximately the equivalent of seven human years. Seven years is a long time to wait to be checked over for any potentially life threatening illnesses. Seeing your pet every six months allows the Doctor to detect disease before problems become more advanced. Our goal is to give you as many happy and healthy years with your beloved pet as we possibly can!
What are some routine tests that my pet may need? Why are they important?
Young Maintenance Profile– When your pet reaches young adulthood (4-7 years) it is recommended that routine blood testing that focuses on the liver, kidneys, protein levels and electrolytes be evaluated. These results can help determine how your pet’s organs are functioning and can alert to potential problems before they are even symptomatic.
Senior Maintenance Profile– Once your pet is 7+ years it is recommended a more in depth blood panel, focusing on all major organs and a complete urinalysis, be evaluated every 6 months. It is important to remember for every 6 months of your pet’s life it is equivalent to 3 1/2 human years.
Heartworm Test – To ensure your pet does not currently have adult heartworms. Even when on heartworm prevention it is important to ensure the medication is working properly. Occasionally a dose could be late or missed putting your pet at risk. To learn more about Heartworms please visit our Heartworm page.
Intestinal Parasite Screen– You may be asked to bring in a stool sample which will be checked for intestinal parasites.
What vaccines does my pet need?
Rabies vaccine is a mandatory vaccine by the State of Alabama.
DHPP which protects against Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, and Parainfluenza that will be given yearly.
Bordetella which protects against what is commonly known as ‘kennel cough’ that will be given yearly.
Does my pet need vaccines every year?
We offer our clients the option of a 1 year rabies vaccine or 3 year rabies vaccine. Before being eligible for a 3 year rabies vaccine your pet must have previously had a 1 year rabies vaccine the previous year. However, if your pet does not receive the 1-year booster during the appropriate time interval or goes beyond the 3 year interval, by law, we must start over with a 1 year protocol for your pet’s Rabies vaccine. Rabies is REQUIRED BY LAW.
As an alternative to having the DHPP vaccine, we also offer a Titer Panel which is a laboratory test that measures the presence and amount of antibodies in the blood. This test would ensure that your pet is protected. This test should be done yearly.