Stacy Boll Explains Importance of Pet Exams – Editor’s Note: Stacy Boll is the Hospital Manager at Englewood Animal Health Center on Placida Road. Learn more at EnglewoodAnimalHealthCenter.com.
As an overview, what are the services available at your center?
We offer full wellness care, a wide range of lab work, surgery, dental care with dental x-ray, digital x-ray, ultrasound, boarding, grooming, and microchipping. We also offer pet insurance and pet supplies including nutritional items. We also offer an online store with competitive prices and a bilingual doctor.
Why are regular preventative exams important for dogs and cats?
Regular preventative exams are recommended to keep up with the health of your pet. Annual exams are good for humans too although most people are less regular when it comes to exams unless they are dealing with a condition. Dogs and cats, however, age much faster than humans, so they may only get a dozen or so exams in their lifetime, which makes regular exams that much more important. Realistically, a lot can change for a pet in a single year.
What does an exam include and how long do they take to complete?
A wellness or preventative exam includes a thorough check of all the body systems. There are many things we look at that can reveal if the pet is doing okay or dealing with a prospective condition. That includes paying attention to their eyes, ears, oral health, heart, respiratory, gastrointestinal, nervous system, pain status, overall condition, and more. We depend on our physical exams and diagnostic tests to give us clues since pets can’t tell us how they are feeling.
We also rely on pet owners to provide us with a history of their pet, which is helpful when we are formulating a health status, diagnosis, or preventative recommendation. The amount of time the exam takes depends mostly on the cooperation of the pet. We budget plenty of time to work with each pet and the owner to make sure we are collecting their observations from caring for their pet each day.
Are exams tailored to fit various breeds of dogs and cats?
Many breeds (especially pure breeds) are predisposed to different ailments, conditions and diseases. We certainly take that into account when completing a physical exam. Knowing what some of those predispositions are provides us an opportunity during juvenile exams to educate pet owners regarding what to look for during the life of their pet.