Our older pets are considered geriatric when they reach approximately 7 years of age. At that stage, they require more attention. As they get older, cats and dogs become more susceptible to organ failure and other diseases.
An annual exam by a veterinarian can help early detection of health problems. Thus, the condition can treated early which can significantly increase the quality of life as well as the longevity of your pet.
During the consultation, your veterinarian will look to obtain information about the energy level, habits, changes in vision, hearing, food and water consumption as well urinary and defecation habits. All this information can help orient the physical exam and diagnostic procedures that may be necessary.
The physical exam aims to detect anomalies, especially those associated with aging animals. For example, hydration level, body weight and renal palpation are done to detect renal disease, while hair quality, body weight and the shape of the thyroid gland are evaluated to detect a potential problem with the thyroid gland. Arthrosis is suspected when lameness is observed during the exam or pain or abnormal noises are present when the articulation is handled. Another example is the evaluation of the vision, especially the crystallin, can give information useful in the detection of cataracts.
Following the physical exam, the veterinarian will be able to determine if vaccination is safe for your animal. It is important to note that vaccination is particularly important for older animals as their immune system grows weaker as they get older.
Finally, based on the results of the physical exam, a global health profile of your animal can be established. Depending on those results, additional diagnostic tests might be indicated.
Come visit our veterinarians for your animal. Call us at 450-671-7264.