At home yearly physical examination
Detecting sickness in human is easier than finding out whether your pet isn’t feeling well. Their natural instinct is to hide their injury and sickness since it makes them vulnerable to predators. But over time the injury or illness takes control and by that time it may be too late for them. This can be avoided by doing a physical exam on your pets on a regular basis or scheduling annual vet check ups.
An annual physical examination for your pets is important even if you feel your pet is healthy enough and doesn’t need one. These examinations will help in preventing diseases or at least detecting them early on. Since many diseases and ailments in pets aren’t evident in the early stages, these regular check ups ensure that they are caught in time for treatment to be a viable option. Since dogs age faster than humans, there are more changes happening with them at any point of time. In fact, by the time a dog turns 8, he is considered a geriatric. A senior wellness profile is usually carried out at this stage which tests their body systems thoroughly. Such exams can detect problems like organ failure and cancer early. While both cats and dogs age faster than humans, cats usually receive less care than dogs. Since they are more independent than dogs, people usually tend to forget about their health check ups.
A physical exam is usually conducted by an experienced vet who is trained to detect illnesses in your pets. However, you can carry out one at home as well. With checks, you will have a clear idea of what is normal for your pet so when there is an issue, you will be able to detect it. Though it is still essential to take the pet to the vet once a year, the checks in between will give you a better picture.
For performing the exam on your pet at home, make sure you have a relaxed environment. It is important that the pet isn’t anxious either. You can put your pet on your lap and start from the tip of their nose and continue till their tail.
· The nose should vary between dry and moist based on the body temperature.
· Check the eye for any abnormal discharge.
· Make sure the pupils of the eyes are symmetrical and the surrounding white area isn’t red. Red sclera indicates infection in the eyes.
· Check their mouths for lesions, bad breath or swelling. The gums should be pink, teeth free of tartar and plaque and the tongue and roof of the mouth must be clean.
· The jaw line should be clean
· Ears should be free of debris
· Next check their skin and coat for lumps, bumps and flakiness. Try to evaluate weight and muscle tone.
· Check motion of joints and for heat and swelling on the body.
· Make sure the claws are free of debris and paws are clean.
· Check the bottom for cleanliness too.
Maintain a body chart and mark your findings regularly. Any major discrepancy would be easily noticeable and should be followed up with a visit to the vet.
In : Preventive care
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