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At these visits, the senior pet protocol includes a thorough physical exam to determine overall health, including physical condition, weight, mobility, and any changes that might indicate the onset of age-related disorders or diseases. The pet owner's contribution is invaluable to this process; as the primary caregiver, you will be able to inform us of changes in behavior, habits, or appearance that may indicate developing problems. This early detection process is key to addressing conditions before they become major or life-threatening issues.
Laboratory testing is critical to assessing the health status of your pet. Once determined, any subtle changes discovered during the wellness visits may be early indicators of underlying disease.
Tests recommended for senior pets may include the following:
Once we evaluate these tests, a plan for vaccinations and parasite prevention or treatment will be tailored to the exact needs of your pet. Any additional age-related needs are addressed with you prior to setting treatment goals as we explain all the options and review every recommendation for your pet's health and well-being.
Senior pets experience many changes that include the need for adjustments to the diet and daily activity. Mobility issues such as arthritis can alter previously successful exercise routines, as may sensory changes such as vision or hearing loss. A change in the ability to taste or smell may prevent your pet from enjoying favorite foods, resulting in weight loss and gradually deteriorating condition.
Regular attention to this area of your pet's life helps us to enhance both current well-being and quality of life in the future. Learn more about pet nutrition at South Wilton Veterinary Group.
The American Animal Hospital Association offers these guidelines for senior pet care.