When you register your pet with our veterinarian, you may be asked if you are interested in securing a preventative health care plan for him. If you are quite new to pet parenting, there is a good chance that you don’t really know what a one of these is, and this often leads to people declining the service without fully understanding it. In fact, a comprehensive preventative health care plan is arguably one of the most important investments that you can make for the future health and happiness of your beloved animal.
What is a preventative health care plan?
A preventative health care plan is the name given to a service offered by veterinarians that are designed specifically to help protect the long-term wellbeing of your pet.
This is important as preventing illness is always far easier than treating it once it has taken hold of your household pet. Not only will this enable your precious animal to avoid pain and suffering, but he could also avoid permanent damage to his body and health and the need to go through long and unpleasant treatment programs.
Preventing illness is especially important for animals since they are naturally predisposed to hiding any signs of weakness or vulnerability. This means that symptoms are often late to appear, subtle and easily overlooked when they do, and this could enable a disease or infection to have a substantial effect on your pet’s health before medical intervention is sought.
Preventative tests are usually carried out annually, and even if the results come back as showing your pet is in good health, they are stored. The reason for this is so that they can be compared against with later tests as this can sometimes show patterns that could point towards the slow development of sickness – something which can then investigate quickly. Should there be a problem occurring, the necessary action can be taken promptly.
What services are included in a preventative health care plan for pets?
What exactly is included in a preventative care plan tends to vary depending on the services and packages offered by your chosen vet? Nevertheless, some of the most common elements you might be offered could encompass:
These include a complete blood count, which looks at the number of red and white cells present in your pet’s blood sample, and a blood chemistry test. This examines the levels of various chemicals found in your pet’s blood and checks that they are within ‘normal’ ranges. If you have a dog, he will probably be given annual blood tests to check for heartworm too – a potentially deadly parasite that lives inside the body of the host.
Blood panels are one of the most useful diagnostic tools that our veterinarian has at their disposal, as this quick, simple test can provide a huge amount of information about the health and wellbeing of your animal.
Urinalysis & Fecal Testing
What comes out of your body is just as important as what goes in and examining the waste products that your pet produces can also tell our vet a great deal about how well his body is functioning.
If there are any unusual growths, lumps or bumps on your pet, these can be detected by a thorough physical exam. Our vet can also assess the condition of your pet’s coat and skin, check for signs of parasites and ensure your pet is a healthy weight.
Parasite prevention is an essential part of your pet’s care. Unfortunately, parasites will affect most animals at some point during their lifetime. However, since they carry diseases as well as drinking the blood of their host, they could potentially infect your pet with a dangerous or even deadly illness if your animal doesn’t have adequate preventative treatment. There are many types of parasite prevention available, from collars and shampoos to spot-on treatments and oral medications. Our vet will be able to recommend which is right for your pet and how often top-ups will be needed to ensure that your pet remains suitably protected.
If you are interested in finding out more about preventative health care plans for pets, our dedicated team of veterinary professionals would be thrilled to assist you. Please contact our offices to arrange a face-to-face appointment.