The simple truth is that your pet ages much faster than you do. Countless health changes can occur in as little as six months! Routine wellness exams maintain optimal health by closely keeping track of health trends, which allows us to identify abnormalities and areas of concern much sooner. Early identification is key. This provides us with more treatment options and a greater likelihood for treatment success. Depending on your pet’s age and health status, we recommend annual or semi-annual wellness visits.
You can expect Dr. Haag to perform a comprehensive nose-to-tail physical exam. All major bodily systems and physical conditions such as eyes, ears, dental health, weight, skin, coat, joints, abdominal region, and pulmonary health are examined for abnormalities or areas of concern. If any abnormalities are identified, we may need to perform additional testing.
What to Expect:
- Nose-to-tail physical exam
- Recommended vaccinations and necessary diagnostics
- Assess health trends and indications of illness such as weight gain or loss
- Discuss your pet’s behavior, diet, exercise habits, and regular activity level
- Answer any and all of your questions!
Your pet will inevitably come in contact with an infectious condition at some point in their life based on factors such as lifestyle, age, health status, and risk of exposure. Staying up-to-date with vaccinations protects your pet’s health and your wallet by avoiding costly treatments.
Accidents happen. If you and your companion are ever separated, microchips provide lifelong identification. Therefore, if your pet is found, you have a greater chance of being reunited! While collars and ID tags are strongly recommended, they are not foolproof. These forms of identification commonly fall off, get lost, or removed. For the safety of your pet, we recommend using both forms of identification.
This process is fast, painless, inexpensive—and invaluable! The microchip is implanted between the shoulder blades, much like a vaccination. This process is so simple it is often performed at the same time as vaccinations or a procedure.
Parasite Prevention and Control
Parasites are a grave concern for pets. Fleas and ticks, intestinal parasites, worms, and protozoa can cause severe damage and even lead to death. Protect your pet with parasite prevention and control!
How do I protect my pet from parasite infestation?
- Routine testing
- Preventative medication
- Control parasites in and around your home
- Know the signs/symptoms
- Discuss treatment options
Fleas and ticks are external parasites that irritate the skin and cause skin allergies. Fleas make your pet susceptible to tapeworms and Bartonella, while ticks carry and transmit Lyme disease. Visually inspect your pet for fleas and signs of ticks after being in risky areas such as woods, camping sites, and humid climates. To protect your pet from external parasites, we strongly recommend once-a-month preventatives.
Intestinal parasites are prevalent in nearly all areas of the United States. Dogs and cats are commonly infected, however, puppies and kittens are most at risk. Intestinal parasites such as roundworm, hookworm, whipworm, and tapeworm can even be passed to humans! To protect your entire family, two-legged and four-legged, we recommend annual or semi-annual fecal testing as well as once-a-month preventatives.
Heartworms invade the bloodstream, lungs, and heart and impair blood circulation, which leads to heart, lung, liver, and kidney damage. Significant damage often occurs prior to outward symptoms such as difficulty breathing, coughing, lethargy, weight loss, and fainting. Mosquitos carry and transmit heartworms, making mosquito infested areas extremely high-risk. Annual testing and once-a-month preventatives are strongly encouraged to combat heartworm infestation.
Avoid sharing food with your pet. We understand that food is often associated with love, however, your pet’s nutritional needs are much different than your own! An improper diet and sharing human food may induce allergic reactions, poisoning, and overweight and obesity. Overall recommended nutrition is effected by age, gender, weight, health status, and breed.
If your pet suffers from nutritional challenges such as liver disease, renal failure, bladder and kidney stones, food allergies, or obesity— nutritional counseling is highly beneficial! A specialized diet or simply a balanced diet can make a huge difference. If your pet’s eating habits or weight suddenly and unexpectedly changes, please visit us. This may indicate a more serious, underlying condition.
At Dwight Veterinary Clinic, we offer Hill’s Prescription Diet and Royal Canin foods. If you prefer other prescription brands, these products can be specially ordered from our online pharmacy.
Two of our doctors are trained to treat exotic pets. They are able to offer exotic pet services in the form of physical exams, bloodwork, dentals, and emergency care. If you are looking for care for your exotic pet or small mammal such as a ferret, rabbit, guinea pig, chinchilla, or rat, as well as a reptile or bird, please visit Dr. Miller. Dr. Carter is also highly trained to care for exotic pets. However, due to allergies, he is unfortunately unable to treat rabbits.
Puppy & Kitten Care
We cannot wait to meet your new puppy or kitten! It is essential to begin your new pet’s life with health and happiness in mind. New pets are exciting and adorable, but they require a lot of extra care and attention during early and critical years of life. At Dwight Veterinary Clinic, we want to give your new fur baby the very best start in live with specialized services tailored to young age. We are here to ensure your new pet receives necessary and timely examinations, vaccinations, and diagnostics. During your first visit, we will discuss additional services such as spay-neuter and microchipping.
Before 8-16 weeks of age, we recommend that your puppy or kitten have 3-4 physical exams. These exams provide a baseline of health and allows your veterinarian to assess overall wellness and administer necessary vaccinations.
Puppies and kittens have immature immune systems, making them more vulnerable to illness and disease. Vaccinations are administered in a carefully staged series. Each puppy and kitten is different, therefore our recommendations are tailored to lifestyle and breed.
At 6-12 months of age, puppies should be tested for heartworm. During a kitten’s first visit, we recommend Feline Leukemia and Feline AIDS testing if not previously done.
Generally, canines are considered seniors at age 7 and felines are considered seniors at age 8.
At Dwight Veterinary Clinic, we want your pet to be happy, healthy, and active into old age—after all, it’s their golden years! As a pet ages, the immune system weakens. This makes your senior pet much more susceptible to illness, disease, and parasite infestation. For this reason, we strongly encourage semi-annual visits so we can keep a closer eye on changes in health such as weight loss, pulmonary health, lung disease, dental disease, cataracts, glaucoma, arthritis, and cancer.
You can expect your senior sweetheart to develop age- related behaviors such as greater vocalization, confusion and disorientation, irritability, less responses, less grooming, house soiling, repetitive actions, frequent wandering, and an altered sleep schedule. This is normal! Do not give up on your companion. Our trained and experienced medical team is here to help with these new challenging behaviors.