There are a number of regular care checks that you can do at home to help keep your pet healthy. Try to incorporate these into your pet’s daily routine to get your pet used to them.
Although our pets’ ears are big, fluffy and cute, this can make them the perfect environment for things to get lodged in or bacteria to grow. Routinely check your pet’s ears for grass awns blockages, discharge, wax or smells.
Our pets' ear canals are longer than ours, so sometimes they require a clinical examination deep into their ear to see these signs. You might notice other signs of irritation, such as head shaking, scratching, head tilts, sensitivity to touching of the head/ears. If you are concerned, contact your local Medivet practice.
Like our own hair, regularly maintaining our pet’s fur is a great way to keep their coat and skin healthy. Brushing your pet regularly will prevent their coat from getting matted, as well as removing dead hair, dirt and dandruff.
It is also a good time to check for any unusual lumps or bumps and keep an eye out for fleas and ticks. Plus, it is a great way to bond.
Try making a game out of it, and, of course, spoil and fuss them so that grooming is a fun, positive routine. It is important to remember to go at your pet’s pace and start slowly, if necessary, to get them used to being handled, and with time, grooming can be an easy, calm and fun time for you and your pet.
Pets love to play and explore the outside world, but this can take its toll on their feet. Small stones, splinters, and grass seeds are some of the many things that may become lodged in your pet’s foot and can cause pain and irritation.
After a walk or a trip outside, check your pet’s legs and feet (especially between the toes) at home for any grass awns, small openings in the skin, reddening or swelling.
Animals love to eat, and so any change in your pet’s appetite can signify a problem.
A decreased appetite may suggest that your pet is feeling unwell, nauseous, in pain or stressed, but may also indicate a more serious problem. Likewise, an unusually increased appetite and a change in behaviour (such as constant food seeking) may also mean something isn't right.
Keep an eye on your pet’s appetite at home and speak to your vet if you notice any changes or are concerned.
Even if you keep a close eye on your pet’s health at home, there are a number of checks and treatments, which need to be performed by a vet on a regular basis to ensure your pet gets the best care. These include:
Vaccinating your pet is a vital part of regular care as it protects them against a range of diseases.
We recommend an initial starter vaccination course in young animals (this normally involves two or three vaccinations) followed by an annual health check and booster vaccination to keep them protected throughout their lives.
Different species require vaccinations against different diseases. Speak to your local Medivet to find out what your pet needs.
Our pets often fall victim to various internal and external parasites and, unfortunately, they cannot treat themselves, so they rely on us to keep them free from fleas, ticks, and worms.
Parasites can be zoonotic which means some can pass between animals and humans – so it’s really important to make sure your pet is not affected or else they (and you!) are at risk.
There are several different parasite products available, but they don’t all offer the same level of protection. Your vet will be able to prescribe complete parasite control tailored to the needs of your pet.
Pets, like people, form plaque and tartar on their teeth and will need them checked by a professional regularly. Dental disease is regrettably the most common disease found in animals, but it can be prevented.
A simple dental check at the clinic will allow your vet to assess your pet’s teeth and advise if any treatment is needed.
It can be difficult to tell your pet's weight just by looking at them, especially with fluffier breeds. By keeping track of your pet’s weight, you are helping to ensure that they are fighting fit year-round. Being over or underweight can be a sign of an underlying condition.
Contact your local Medivet for a complimentary weight check where a member of the team will be able to check your pet is in the optimal weight range and offer advice where necessary.
Unlike humans, our pets can’t tell us when they’re feeling unwell and sometimes it’s not until after a condition has developed that they show any symptoms. That’s why it’s so important to visit the vets regularly for a full nose-to-tail health check even if your pet appears healthy.
A full health check will involve a physical examination as well as the vet asking you questions about your pet. This will help detect any problems early and give you peace of mind that your pet is healthy.
For some quick tips and advice on the regular care that your vet can do, click here.