Vaccinations and an Annual Checkup for Dogs Benefit Both Pet and Owner

A regular checkup and vaccination schedule helps maintain cainine health.An annual checkup for dogs are good not only for your pet but also they can be beneficial to you too! It is a good way to figure out if your pet is getting sick or has a problem before it gets to a critical stage.

What happens at an annual checkup for dogs is the doctor will take his/her temperature to see if they are around 101 and 102.5, which is normal.

The doctor will also want to look at the skin coat and color. The fur should not be bristly but should be shiny and smooth. The skin should also not be too flakey or oily but just clear.

Another thing that should always be checked is the pet’s ears to see if they have any infections, ticks or allergic reactions. Ears can be a telling sign of another problem with the dog.

A quick listen to the breathing should also be done to ensure that the heart and lungs are doing everything they’re supposed to be doing. This can be useful to see if there’s a murmur in the heart or if the lungs are not functioning as well as they should.

Finally, the doctor should try to look in the mouth of the pet to see if there are any infections, teeth missing, tumors and a number of other problems! It is important to keep up on the dental health of your dog to reduce tooth decay and gingivitis.

Fecal Exam, Heartworm and Tick Born Diseases Testing

It is important for your pet to have a fecal exam, because sometimes that is the only way to tell that something is wrong before the symptoms get too severe. Multiple exams can be performed with a fecal sample including: tapeworm detection, roundworm detection and hookworm detection.

Heartworm testing can be done through drawing blood, which can also be beneficial for your pet’s health. Having a blood test done is an easy way to see if your pet has any problems, including testing for Lyme disease.

The American Animal Hospital (AAHA) recommends getting the basic vaccinations including: Distemper, Rabies, Bordetella, Canine Influenza and LEPTO. Also, depending on the lifestyle of you and your pet, some other vaccines may be beneficial.

We also provide a service called tittering. Tittering is when a blood sample is taken to screen for the number of antibodies to determine if the animal is able to fight off an infection on their own. Why do this? It’s important to see if the pet can do without having an unnecessary vaccine to prevent an infection that they already have enough antibodies to fight off!

It is also important to keep your pet updated on parasite prevention. Parasites can be a big problem for you and your pet, as they can often times go undetected for a while and become an extreme health risk. There are different kinds of parasites, so be vigilant to any change in your dog’s behavior and make sure you keep up on giving them the right preventive care.

We’ve always had good memories at Sykesville Veterinary Clinic. I know my pets are well taken care of because the doctors are very knowledgeable and caring.
Janet Davis & 'Maggie'