Your dog’s physical exam
Just what is the veterinarian looking for when they stare and gently push, pull, and poke your dog during a visit? Here’s a breakdown of the major body systems we like to check out and what we’re looking for (and hoping not to find!).
Your cat’s physical exam
Just what is the veterinarian looking for when they stare and gently push, pull, and poke your cat during a visit? Here’s a breakdown of the major body systems we like to check out and what we’re looking for (and hoping not to find!).
- Eyes: signs of disease; discharge or tearing; abnormal movement or reaction to light
- Mouth: signs of periodontal disease in teeth and gums; bad breath
- Ears: signs of ear infection (pain, tenderness, redness, swelling, “yeasty” smell, and discharge); mites
- Heart: Weak or abnormal heart sounds; an abnormally fast or slow rate; irregular beats
- Abdomen: any irregularities in the margins of the liver, spleen, kidneys, and bladder; masses or tumors; thickened intestines
- Base of tail: any abscesses; abnormalities in anal glands; fecal mats; evidence of soft stools; growths; parasites, like tapeworm segments and flea dirt
- Lymph nodes and thyroid glands: any irregularities or changes in size
- Lungs: wheezing, crackling, or other abnormal lung sounds
- Legs: limited range of motion in all limbs; signs of pain or discomfort; grinding sound in joints
- Coat, skin, and nails: poor overall quality of coat; lumps and bumps; rashes; areas of hair loss or excessive dander; matted or saliva-stained fur; fleas or ticks; callouses; overgrown or ingrown toenails; dehydration
Animal Hospital and Laboratory Testing
Since your pet cannot tell us what is wrong, veterinarians must sometimes supplement physical exams with sophisticated diagnostic testing.
We work with external referral labs to allow us measuring more than 100 laboratory values, with results often available in one day.
Along with heartworm testing, complete blood count, blood-chemistry panel, urinalysis and fecal examination are the most common laboratory tests performed at our hospital.
To help prevent periodontal disease in your pet, it’s recommended to have your pets’ teeth examined every 6 to 12 months. To schedule a wellness care visit, please call our pet hospital at: 905-303-0322.