When a veterinarian examines your pet for a routine checkup, they are looking at your animal’s vital signs, possibly taking blood samples for testing against known potential health risks, looking for signs of disease or infection, and generally taking into account any changes that can be noticed since the last time they were seen. Weight loss and attitude changes in the pet are some of the telltale signs that something might be wrong, and at the visit, the veterinarian is looking for signals that there may be something wrong that can be treated. Many times, the pet itself will not give any physical signs of illness, and not yelp, or cry during their daily activities. This is due to the fact that animals will hide their illnesses or injuries through instinct, as in the wild an animal that is sick or injured is easy prey for predators. Your pet is a patient that is not willing to give many signs of illness, so it is the job of the veterinarian to use the knowledge of physical signals to diagnose illnesses or injuries even if you or I would not see them.
During the examination, the veterinarian may do additional procedures to get a better understanding of what is happening inside of the pet’s body. This is usually the case if the veterinarian finds some area of concern and wants to get a better look. This will generally involve x-rays or bloodwork. An x-ray will allow the doctor to see inside the pet’s body, giving them the ability to see the shape, size, and position of bones and internal organs. The doctor will be able to get a sense as far as things like enlarged organs or arthritis inside of your pet that could need treatment. In addition to x-rays, bloodwork will allow the veterinarian to get a sense of the chemistry of your pet’s body, and look for specific deficiencies or diseases that can be seen through elevations or low counts of specific chemical bodies in the blood. Things like diabetes and cancer can help to be diagnosed through bloodwork.
In addition to typical veterinary exams, Pet Health Hospital also utilizes a system of “pet wellness” tests, which compare your pet’s health status, breed, and age to other known cases. What this does is gives the veterinarian a baseline of known characteristics of good health in a pet like yours, and also pinpoints specific potential health issues that are known to exist in pets like yours. Each breed and type of pet has specific issues that we have learned affect them, and by looking for the specific signs that we know exist for that type of issue we can potentially identify it earlier and provide more effective treatments. Combining preemptive analysis of the pet’s health with vaccinations and regular maintenance procedures, we find that we can help pets live longer and healthier lives by avoiding known conditions that lead to expensive surgeries and treatments. This is what makes Pet Health Hospital so special, and why we hope that you choose us for your veterinary services.