Companion Animal

Questions to Ask During Your Pet’s Annual Checkup

Mar 9 • 2 minute read

Just as you need an annual doctor visit, your pet needs an annual veterinary checkup to help maintain their good health. When your pet is sick, a visit to the vet focuses solely on the problem. A yearly checkup allows you to get vital information that will help your pet stay happy and healthy.

Make sure to ask the following questions at your pet’s next annual checkup:

Does My Pet Need Any Vaccines?

Keeping up with recommended vaccinations can help your pet stay healthy. Your pet’s veterinarian can weigh any possible risks with the benefits of vaccines to determine the best vaccination schedule. These recommendations depend on your pet’s age, medical history, environment, and lifestyle.

Am I Feeding My Pet the Best Food in the Right Amounts?

Making sure your pet has the best food is vital to their health. The amount of food they eat is also important. Although they need a healthy diet, many pets are overfed and, as a result, are at an unhealthy weight. Your pet’s dietary needs can also change as they age or their lifestyle changes, so you should ask your vet this question annually.

Is My Pet at a Healthy Weight?

It’s sometimes hard to recognize if your pet is overweight. The problem is very common, however, with more than half of cats and dogs in the U.S. weighing more than they should. This problem can increase their risk of developing health issues such as joint problems, pancreatitis, and diabetes. Your pet could also be underweight, but this is much less common. The vet can suggest ways you can help your pet reach and maintain a healthy weight.

Should I Brush Their Teeth, and Do They Need a Dental Cleaning?

By the time your pet is three years old, they’re very likely to have dental disease. This can affect their heart, kidney, or liver. Ask your vet if you should brush your pet’s teeth and for tips on how to do this. You should also inquire about a professional dental cleaning for your pet. If mild problems are already starting to develop, it’s best to take care of them with a dental cleaning before they become worse.

Is My Pet’s Behavior Normal?

Many pets have unique quirks, ranging from odd behaviors to strange eating habits, and their annual visit is a great time to ask the vet about these habits. Most of them are probably benign, but it’s a good idea to run them past the vet to be sure they aren’t a cause for concern.

Use your pet’s annual checkup as an opportunity to learn more about their behavior and how you can provide them with the best possible care. Getting and following this advice can help increase the chances of your pet living a long, happy, healthy life.

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