Wellness Screening – What is it and why is it important?
Spring is on the way – at least I hope so after the snowy and rainy weather we have endured in the early weeks of April! This means that we need to start thinking about yearly wellness and parasite screening for our pets.
What is wellness screening?
Wellness screening provides us with an overall look at your pet’s internal organ function and health. This can involve collecting blood, urine and fecal samples from your pet for evaluation at the lab.
What does wellness screening check for?
There are various wellness screening options available for your pet. Our veterinarians will make a recommendation for your pet based on their stage of life and health evaluation.
- Blood samples allow us to evaluate your pet’s blood cells, blood sugar, kidneys, liver, blood proteins, electrolytes, pancreas, thyroid hormones, heartworm and tick-borne disease infections.
- Urine samples allow us to evaluate your pet’s kidneys, liver and bladder. It also allows us to assess for signs of infection, inflammation, crystals, and other abnormalities – like sugar or protein in the urine.
- Fecal samples allow us to evaluate your pet for any underlying infection with various intestinal parasites.
Why is wellness screening important?
- Our pets have an amazing ability to hide signs of illness.
- Annual physical examinations and wellness testing are excellent diagnostic tools that aid in monitoring your pets overall health.
- Identifying organ changes early and trending changes over time allows us to intervene and slow down the disease progression which can extend your pet’s life.
- Normal test results are always the best news and they provide us with a valuable baseline! The baseline results are a great reference for comparison of additional tests performed, especially with respect to test performed during times of illness.
Authored by: Dr. Kate Harrison, DVM