The Importance of a Thorough Physical Exam

As pet owners, we can’t underestimate the importance of a hands-on physical exam by a veterinarian. It is recommended to have your pet examined yearly, but so often we ask, “Why does my pet need to come in when he appears happy and healthy?”

Here at Hermosa Animal Hospital, we are extremely saddened when a seemingly-healthy pet comes in for an exam and we find something unexpected. Animals are instinctively adept as hiding their aches and pains. Early detection can make all the difference.

In addition to a nose-to-tail examination, we recommend that lab work (blood and urine analysis) to help your veterinarian gather the complete picture.  

Blood tests show us what is in our pets’ blood, of course, but also what is happening in their bodies, based on the levels of different substances. A general blood test can look at 20 or more different parts of the blood, including minerals, proteins, etc. Blood tests are great at helping us find potential problems early.

Urinalysis (a urine test) can identify certain illnesses in their early stages, including Kidney Disease, Liver Disease, and Diabetes. Urinalysis also detects crystals in the urine (which could lead to blockage) and, of course, bladder infections.

Some other things your veterinarian is looking for include:

  • Masses, tenderness, or fluid buildup
  • Liver or kidney values outside of their normal range
  • Ear and skin issues
  • Dental issues
  • Eye abnormalities
  • Irregular heart beat or murmur
  • Abnormal lung sounds
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Weight issues (over- or underweight)

Your pet’s annual exam is also a good time to discuss any concerns you may have. Your observations as a pet parent are extremely important. This information, in conjunction with the exam and lab work, will help your pet stay happy and healthy for many years to come.

Our physical exam fee is currently $60.00. The total for our Wellness Package (exam and full lab screening for healthy pets) is $208.64. Please call (310) 376-8819 to schedule!

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