Your pet needs care at every stage of her life. However, exactly what care your pet needs will depend on her species and potentially breed, and her life stage. This means that you can expect to see considerable differences in the main elements of caring for your pet as she gets older. For example, her appetite will change, her nutritional requirements will vary, and her activity levels will alter. As such, it is important for veterinarians to tailor their services to meet the evolving needs of your precious pet.
Why pediatric pet care?
Infant pets, just like infant humans, need more looking after than adults. There are certain health problems and diseases that are more commonly associated with pediatric pets, and specific preventative healthcare steps that you, as a responsible owner, should take when your pet is a baby to ensure that she lives a life that is as long, healthy and active as possible.
While all vets receive the same education and training, some choose to go on to specialize in a specific area of veterinary medicine. For some vets, this is pediatric pet care and these professionals will have spent time and effort furthering their knowledge and understanding of infant pet health and what they can do to support it.
What is included in pediatric pet care?
Exactly what is included in pediatric pet care can vary between veterinarians. However, typically you can expect services, advice, and support including the following:
This is probably the most important aspect of pediatric pet care. While your pet is young, her immune system is weak, and this makes her more vulnerable to disease. Your veterinarian will speak to you about which vaccinations your pet needs to have to keep her safe, including those which are required by law. These are usually spaced over a number of weeks and then repeated when she reaches around a year old. In addition to her vaccinations, your vet will speak to you about parasite prevention including treatments to protect your pet from fleas, ticks, and worms.
Although microchipping isn’t a legal requirement and can be done at any age, the sooner you microchip your pet, the longer she will be able to be identified should she become lost or stolen. Pets that are microchipped are significantly more likely to be returned to their owner – so make this procedure a priority when you get your new family member!
Spaying or neutering your pet should also be done at an early age. Not only is it an important moral decision that will contribute towards decreasing the massive overpopulation of animals living in shelters or euthanized every year through lack of resources to care for them, but it also has significant health and behavioral benefits. For example, spaying females before their first heat can prevent her from developing breast cancer and stop her from suffering from pyometra, a potentially deadly uterine infection.
Our pet’s nutritional requirements change throughout their lifetime. When your pet is still young, she is growing rapidly, and she will need the right foods to help her develop properly and build her immune system. Her stomach will also be much smaller, and this means that she may need to be fed little and often until she is older. Your pediatric vet will be able to help you find the best food for your pet and advise you when and how much she should be eating.
If you are fairly new to pet ownership, you probably have lots of questions about various aspects of her care. This can range from support with house-training and obedience to grooming, socializing and more. Your pediatric veterinarian has the knowledge and experience you need to ensure that you get the best advice.
If you would like to know more about pediatric pet care, or if you would like to talk to us about your pet, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our friendly and experienced vets. Highland Veterinary Clinic at 6805 Darmstadt Road Evansville, IN 47710 is a preferred vet in the Evansville area.