What Pets Really Need at the Vet

I am often asked during examinations to “give only what my pet really needs.” The response depends on your pet’s health, what it does, and where it goes. It is important for pet owners and pet health care providers to maintain a pet’s personal health plan, not just a pet’s vaccinations.

The most important thing a pet needs is periodic physical exams. This biennial or annual veterinary physical examination may reveal health concerns that 90% of pet owners are not aware of. Similar to seeing a relative only every 7 years (1 pet year), you notice changes that have taken place more easily than if you see that relative every day. Some obvious changes may be body conformation, hair, coat, or dental changes. These changes in your pet may facilitate in the development of a health care plan for longer, happier, and healthier pet lives.

The most common disease detected and prevented during routine examinations is intestinal parasites. Intestinal parasites or “worms” are not prevented by vaccinations but by intestinal parasite screening and appropriate preventive worming.

Rabies vaccination is the only vaccination required by law for dogs and cats. Even though it is very important for public health significance, it is a disease your pet is not likely to get. In dogs, a very common disease is Bordatella (Infectious tracheobronchitis or Kennel cough). The incidence of Bordatella is increased in dogs that go to dog parks, kennels, and groomers. Diseases such as the Parvo Virus and Distemper Virus are still being diagnosed in our community. Vaccinations protect pets against these life threatening diseases.

Environmental factors, such as ticks, may indicate the need to vaccinate against Lyme Disease.

In cats, FVRCP (Feline Rhinotrachitis) and Feline Leukemia are highly prevalent diseases and vaccinations should be required. For outside cats with exposure to cat fights and bites, Feline Infectious Peritonitis and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus vaccinations are advised. Feline Bordatella is a respiratory disease in cats. All cats that may be boarded or exposed to other cats should be vaccinated for Feline Bordatella.

Canine Heartworm testing and Feline Leukemia/Feline Immunodeficiency Virus testing are routine tests. They need to be incorporated in your pet’s veterinary health care plan.

When determining what your pet really needs during a veterinary examination, discuss with your veterinarian what kind of health concerns your pet has, its living environment, and its activities and habits. A health care plan is very personalized and should include vaccinations, diagnostics, diets and behavioral adjustments, so your pet can enjoy a healthy and happy life.

By Thomas Carlos, DVM MS

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The vets and techs, even the receptionist, are all exceptionally friendly and professional. I really feel like they care about me and my pets. They... read more

Jordan G.

They were the nicest people. They diagnosed my Dog with allergies. The Dr came out to talk to me. Even called the next day to see how Dingo was. A... read more

Robin L.

They Love Buddha and Chai, and do everything they need at every visit. Everyone is Great with our dogs. We get the best treatment... read more

Carolyn S.

Went to Prima Vista Animal Hospital two times with my puppy Buffy. The staff is just amazing, caring, and very informative. Thank you... read more

Jasmine P.

Prima Vista Animal is the Best animal hospital we have found in St. Lucie! We needed to get both of my dogs vaccinated the same day so they could go... read more

Tisa K.

Jordan G.

The vets and techs, even the receptionist, are all exceptionally friendly and professional. I really feel like they care about me and my pets. They took great care of my cat, even with curbside service. They were personable and empathetic and the vet came out to my car personally to let me know what she thought and to listen to my concerns. They took into consideration what I had to say and looked into my concerns. They were thorough and quick to jump onto any concerns they had to get ahead of any issues, especially since my cat is older now. I’m so glad I chose to come to Prima Vista for my cat’s care.

Robin L.

They were the nicest people. They diagnosed my Dog with allergies. The Dr came out to talk to me. Even called the next day to see how Dingo was. A new wonderful vet for my dog.

Carolyn S.

They Love Buddha and Chai, and do everything they need at every visit. Everyone is Great with our dogs. We get the best treatment there.

Jasmine P.

Went to Prima Vista Animal Hospital two times with my puppy Buffy. The staff is just amazing, caring, and very informative. Thank you guys

Tisa K.

Prima Vista Animal is the Best animal hospital we have found in St. Lucie! We needed to get both of my dogs vaccinated the same day so they could go to the kennel before we left to go on vacation, the next day. I called. They made sure that they fit us in with absolutely no notice at all! They were so kind.

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