Wellness exams give a complete picture of your pet’s health and are useful in detecting diseases and other health problems in the early stages—before they become more difficult and more expensive, to treat. During the exam, what may appear as gentle stroking and lovable touching by your veterinarian is actually a very thorough “hands-on” overall health evaluation.
Protecting your pet from contracting deadly contagious diseases has progressed from “vaccinating for everything every year” to a complex science that continues to evolve as new technologies emerge and advancements are made. Current research and guidelines have been changed to help develop and individualize the standards of care for each pet.
Strawbridge Animal Care tailors each pet’s vaccination protocol according to his or her needs. We take into account age, exposure, environment, health status, breed, lifestyle, and travel habits, among other things. Our veterinarians vaccinate each pet selectively and as infrequently as possible, all while ensuring adequate protection. Our protocols are regularly updated, relying on information from noted specialty boards, specialists, and organizations, such as the American Animal Hospital Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners, to help us better care for your pets.
Visiting us twice a year gives us more time and opportunities to offer education information for you on a variety of topics and allows us to create a more personalized program to suit you and your pet’s individualized needs.
We have created a disease assessment form for you to fill out during each exam with questions regarding your pet so that we can create a vaccine protocol specific to your animal.
Why Twice Yearly?
- Dogs and cats mature at an accelerated rate compared to the human aging process. They age 7 years for every calendar year.
- Adolescents grow even more rapidly, making a 1-year old dog into its teen years and a 1-year old cat in its mid 20s.
- Regular veterinary care is important in all stages of an animal’s life.
- You will learn more about dental care, nutrition, behavior, parasite control, and disease prevention at every visit.
What to Expect During Each Visit
Each annual visit will consist of:
- Examination by the veterinarian
- Vaccines individualized for your pet
- Heart worm test, which also tests for three tick-borne illnesses found in this area
- Fecal parasite evaluation test
Each semi-annual visit consists of:
- Examination by the veterinarian
- Fecal parasite evaluation test
- Bordetella vaccine, if needed
- Junior or senior blood work, depending on the age of your pet
- Other lab tests based on your pet’s needs
Why We Recommend Blood Work
Decreasing intervals between visits give us a better opportunity for early disease diagnosis and intervention. Clinical studies have shown that about 10% of pets have some underlying disease or abnormality. These pets are usually normal upon physical exam, and their illnesses may have gone undetected. Just like in humans, early detection allows for better treatment options and usually a better outcome.
Veterinarians have used wellness profiles to lead to the diagnosis of several diseases and disorders, such as:
- Electrolyte disturbances
- Thyroid, liver, and kidney disease
- Gastrointestinal disorders
- Cardiac disease
There are several different panels that we may ask to perform for your pet:
Pre-surgical blood work – Performed any time your pet undergoes a surgical procedure; checks for basic liver and kidney functions as well as hydration.Junior wellness profileDone at the semi-annual visit for pets ages 1–7; checks for more comprehensive liver and kidney values, as well as pancreatic function, red and white blood cell counts, and clotting factors.Senior wellness profileDone at the semi-annual visit for pets ages 8 and over; this profile is more extensive than the junior wellness profile and includes a urinalysis and thyroid evaluation screen. Additionally, this lab work may include a cardiac proBNP, which aids in identifying
Junior wellness profile – Done at the semi-annual visit for pets ages 1–7; checks for more comprehensive liver and kidney values, as well as pancreatic function, red and white blood cell counts, and clotting factors.Senior wellness profileDone at the semi-annual visit for pets ages 8 and over; this profile is more extensive than the junior wellness profile and includes a urinalysis and thyroid evaluation screen. Additionally, this lab work may include a cardiac proBNP, which aids in identifying
Senior wellness profile – Done at the semi-annual visit for pets ages 8 and over; this profile is more extensive than the junior wellness profile and includes a urinalysis and thyroid evaluation screen. Additionally, this lab work may include a cardiac proBNP, which aids in identifying cardiac disease.
Veterinary Nutrition & Proper Diet for Optimal Wellness
Proper nutrition is an important component of your pet’s wellness regime. Your veterinarian will help you make healthful adjustments to your pet’s diet based on his or her age, weight, activity level, and the existence of any special medical conditions. Observing your pet’s eating habits and fluctuations in weight and appearance are critical in the early detection of medical conditions, and any significant changes should be reported to your veterinarian.
We have a large variety of prescription and non-prescription diets, and we can special order a diet for your pet if we do not carry it.
Our clinic carries canine and feline diets and supplements, including:
- Royal Canine Prescription Diets
- Hills Prescription Diet
- Purina Prescription Diets
- Joint supplements
- Dental care chews and diets
- Skin, hair, and coat supplements
All of our veterinarians and staff are trained in nutrition and can help you evaluate the current diet your pet is on and provide nutritional statistics.
Our veterinarians offer guidance in the following areas of nutrition:
Life stage diets – Our veterinarians can help you provide the nutrition your pet needs for every stage of his or her life, from a 6-week-old Labrador retriever to a middle-aged Siamese cat. We want your pet to live a long and happy life, and nutrition is an important factor in that.
Nutritional counseling and education – Our veterinarians can evaluate your pet’s current diet and will help you select a balanced diet that will meet your pet’s specific needs. Our veterinarians also will discuss with you how to prevent certain diseases through a balanced diet.
Special-needs diets – We carry many diets that aid in the management of diseases and afflictions, including urinary tract disease, joint disease, gastrointestinal disease, dental disease, liver disease, sensitive stomach, and allergies.
Weight management – Maintaining a lean body weight can help your pet live a longer, healthier life. Our veterinarians will help you choose the right diet so your pet maintains the correct body weight and receives the nutrients he or she needs.