|A wise dog needs looking after.|
Advances in health care have resulted in extended life expectancy of humans as well as our dog and cat companions. Yet, we and our pets appear naturally programmed to age.
Aging is a process that involves a progressive and irreversible loss of functional reserve capacity in the body’s major organ systems. When dogs reach 8 and cats 10 years of age they are considered to have reached their ‘Senior’ stage of life.
Although most dogs and cats live much longer than this, their bodies are getting to the stage where diseases of old age, including arthritis, diabetes, kidney and liver damage and heart conditions can start to develop and can begin to take their toll.
The importance of senior screening was brought to light in a recent study. In this group of over 9 year old dogs, Vets identified abnormalities in 80% of them. Serious and sometimes life threatening signs of age related disease (respiratory distress, increased thirst, and weight loss) were not noted by pet owners or were attributed to non-serious causes. Signs of pain were also not recognized, but 1 in 4 dogs in this study required pain medications.
Only about 14% of senior animals undergo regular health screening. Testing yearly in middle age patients is comparable to seeing your doctor every 4-5 years. However, once an animal is geriatric, routine health care visits are recommended every six months. This would be like seeing your doctor every 2-3 human years.
A proactive approach to senior health issues through regular screening promotes early detection of abnormalities resulting in enhanced quality of life and longevity.
A routine senior screening includes a thorough physical examination, complete blood count, biochemistry profile, blood pressure and urinalysis.
During the October, November and December 2017, Corinium Veterinary Surgery have a Special 50% discount on our Senior Wellness Screening. Please call the surgery to find out more and make an appointment to keep your pet healthy.