Your Dog's Health
Good preventive care begins with careful attention to the basics:
A healthy, nutritious diet builds a foundation for well-being and disease prevention throughout your Pet's life. As a dog ages, their nutritional needs change; for example, a puppy needs a diet high in calories and protein to maintain its active lifestyle and to grow healthy bones and muscles. An older dog may need a diet restricted in calories and supplemented with fiber for optimum weight and gastrointestinal health.
Nutritional counseling is a vital component of your Pet's healthcare–and a part of a discussion with your veterinarian. We can help you decide which food is best for your Pet during each life stage.
Vaccinations protect dogs from many viral and bacterial predators, including parvovirus, corona virus, leptospirosis, adenovirus, parainfluenza virus, and distemper. These organisms cause a wide range of disease symptoms, from sneezing to bloody diarrhea and death.
Just like a child, your puppy needs to be protected at an early age and given boosters as an adult. Vaccinations are one of mankind's greatest medical achievements and can help your Pet live a longer, healthier life–so why take the chance?
Many types of worms can affect your Pet, and some can be contagious to you and your family. Worms attach to the intestinal lining, causing painful diarrhea or life-threatening conditions. They also compete for your Pet's nutrients, stunting growth and depriving your Pet of energy. Worms live inside your Pet, so it may not be obvious that your dog is suffering an infestation.
A veterinary visit needs to include routine fecal exams during which they check for microscopic worm eggs in your Pet's stool sample. Most puppies are born with worms, so our doctors will begin right away to tailor a deworming schedule to meet your Pet's needs. Our goal is to recommend the safest and best deworming medication at the appropriate time for your Pet.
Giardia is one of these microscopic parasites that can invade your Pet's digestive system. Left untreated, the infection may cause your Pet to become increasingly debilitated and susceptible to other infections. There is a risk it is transmitted between Pets and humans, making you subject to the same health threats as your Pets.
Along with vaccinations, routine deworming, and fecal checks, providing your puppy with a heartworm preventive will decrease the likelihood that your Pet will be infected with a blood worm that can cause fatal heartworm disease. To ensure that no infection has occurred, we recommend testing your Pet's blood for heartworm every year. We'll also help you with parasites that attack your Pet from the outside, like fleas, ticks, lice, and mites.
During your dog's life, you'll make many important healthcare decisions. One of the best choices you can make is to spay or neuter your dog. Scheduling this important surgery early in your Pet's life helps prevent many future problems, among them cancer of their productive organs; such behavior problems as fighting, roaming, and marking; and Pet overpopulation.
Spays (which are technically known as ovariohysterectomies) and neuters are routine and generally safe, but they are major surgeries that require general anesthesia and an all-day stay.Spays and neuters are usually performed when the Pet is 4 to 6months old. Your veterinarian will discuss all surgical options with you and help you pick the right time for your Pet.
Think about the regular care you receive throughout your lifetime from pediatricians, dentists, physicians, allergists, ophthalmologists, and so on. Why settle for anything less for your Pet? Now think about the fact that Pets age an average of seven years for everyone of ours–and it's clear why regular care is so critical.
Make an appointment so your Pet receives a physical exam every six months. A regular check-up lets you know if your Pet needs deworming, grooming, training, dental care, a change in diet, or special testing or care. Give your Pet the regular care it needs–and the best chance to live a long, happy life with you!
Information provided by Banfield, The Pet Hospital®. To find the closest Banfield in a PetSmart store near you, visit PetSmart.com.