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It can be frustrating and nerve-wracking to bring your pets to the vet for a wellness exam. Often, it is not the fault of the vet – we just do not know what questions to ask. Here are a few things everyone should ask their vet.
- Is your pet overweight or underweight? - More than 50 percent of the cats and dogs in the United States are overweight, according to a recent survey. Even worse, a lot of pet owners live in denial with their pet's excess weight. Make sure that you ask your vet if your pet is within the healthy weight range for her size, breed and stature. If there is a problem, you can work together on solving the issue. The same applies if your pet is underweight, although that is less typical and tends to have an underlying cause.
- Could you provide more appropriate pet food? - Proper nutrition is the cornerstone of good health, and the vet is the best person to ask about your dog or cat's diet. Once they are done evaluating your pet, they will recommend a diet that is appropriate for your pet's lifestyle, life stage and other underlying health conditions or factors.
- Is your pet's odd behavior normal? - Don't ever make the mistake of assuming that wheezing after exercise is normal, or that it is common for your pet to itch every time he goes outside. An annual wellness exam is the perfect time for you to ask your vet about the peculiar behavioral patterns you have observed in your pet over the last twelve months. Maintain a list so that you can give specific details about its occurrence and frequency.
- Does your pet need to have his teeth cleaned? - Dental disease is common among dogs and cats. Over 80 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats above the age of three suffer from periodontal disease If it is left untreated, it can lead to serious complications like issues with the liver, kidneys and even the heart. Ask you vet if your pet is due for dental cleaning. It is better if you get your pet's teeth cleaned when he has mild tartar or gingivitis. This will ensure that it does not devolve into a full blown systemic problem.
- What tick/flea meds do you recommend? - Ticks and fleas are not only a major nuisance, they also transmit deadly diseases. Luckily, there are a lot of options when it comes to preventing and killing ticks and fleas. Ask your vet about the differences between oral and topical medications and what suits your pet better. There are oral medications in the market that protect against ticks and fleas for up to four weeks with a single dose.