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We know that you care deeply for your pet and want to know how best to optimize your pet’s quality of life and the longevity of your relationship.

Investing in a wellness exam provides your Veterinarian the chance to evaluate your pet’s overall health and detect a problem before it turns into a serious illness. Your pet can’t tell you in words how he is feeling, so the Veterinarian relies on a thorough physical examination to determine if your pet is truly healthy. An important part of a well care visit will likely include a routine blood testing, urinalysis, possible radiographs. During a well care exam, your Veterinarian will ask you a variety of questions. Clients are asked to mention any unusual behavior, including:

  • Excessive urination
  • Excessive drinking of water
  • Excessive panting
  • Eating much more than usual or eating less than usual
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive scratching
  • Coughing
  • Weight gain
  • Difficulty walking or running
  • Difficulty getting up in the morning

At IVS we strongly recommend an annual visit for all pets under the age of 5 years. For pets aged from 5 years to 7 years, IVS recommends a Senior Care Wellness exam every 6 months.

Why We Recommend an Annual Physical Exam

THE INFORMATION WE GATHER AT EACH ANNUAL EXAM BECOMES PART OF YOUR PET’S MEDICAL HISTORY. IT CAN BE CRITICAL WHEN AN EMERGENCY OR SUDDEN ILLNESS ARISES.

Subjective

  1. Significant weight change can be an early warning sign of disease or obesity – a common problem for cats.
  2. Assess the condition of your cat’s legs, joints and spine.
  3. Hair should appear healthy and well-groomed. Dull, dry, brittle hair or hair loss may indicate an underlying illness. Check skin for signs of infection or signs of fleas.
  4. Palpate your cat’s abdomen for abnormal masses or tenderness.
  5. Listen to chest for heart murmurs, irregular heartbeat and abnormal lung sounds.
  6. Examine eyes for cataracts, glaucoma or inflammation.
  7. Examine ears for ear mites, infection or inflammation.
  8. Evaluate nose and nasal passages for signs of upper respiratory disease or allergies.
  9. About 85% of all cats will need some form of dental or periodontal care by age 3. Evaluate cat’s teeth and check color and condition of gums.
  10. Palpate lymph nodes for signs of tumors or infections.
  11. Check rectal area for abnormalities and fecal test.

  1. Significant weight loss can be an early warning sign of disease. Obesity is a common problem for older dogs. Assess diet and nutritional needs.
  2. Check rectal area for abnormalities and fecal test.
  3. Assess the condition of your dog’s legs, hips, joints and spine.
  4. Hair should appear healthy and well-groomed. Dull, dry, brittle hair or hair loss may indicate an underlying illness. Check skin for infection or signs of fleas.
  5. Palpate your dog’s abdomen for abnormal masses or pain.
  6. Listen to chest for heart murmurs, irregular heartbeat and abnormal lung sounds.
  7. Examine eyes for cataracts, glaucoma or inflammation.
  8. Examine ears for ear mites, infection or inflammation.
  9. Evaluate nose and nasal passages for signs of upper respiratory disease.
  10. 95% of all dogs two years or older have periodontal disease. Evaluate your dog’s teeth and check color and condition of gums.
  11. Palpate lymph nodes to check for inflammation or tumors.
  12. Heartworm test.

Objective: Each exam includes an objective evaluation of your pet’s temperature, heart rate, respiratory rate, mucous membrane (color) and hydration level.

An annual physical exam is the best health insurance. Even healthy-looking pets can be infected with diseases. Regular examinations can help avoid problems by catching them before they become serious. An annual physical exam at our hospital, together with a comprehensive vaccination program, is the best way to keep your pet healthy.

To help protect your pet as well as other pets under our care, we require that pets be vaccinated for common infectious diseases, especially if they are to be hospitalized, boarded or surgically treated at our hospital. We ask that you provide a certificate from a licensed veterinarian documenting the required vaccinations or that you provide us with the name of the veterinarian or clinic where vaccinations were administered so that we may obtain the necessary information. If your pet is not currently vaccinated, we will provide that service upon admittance to the hospital.

Vaccines administered to an unhealthy animal may be ineffective.

No animal should be vaccinated without a prior physical examination performed by a licensed veterinarian. Correct timing, particularly for your animals, is essential for vaccines to be effective.

For both owner and pet, an annual visit to a veterinarian is the safest and healthiest choice!