How Well Do You Know Your Pets?

September 13, 2022

With a world-wide shortage of veterinarians and the additional pressure on staffing created by COVID-19, owners are facing increased wait times for veterinary consultations for their pets.

The best way that pet owners can combat this phenomenon is to book their routine vaccination and pet care appointments well in advance. This will ensure that pets continue to receive regular and timely check-ups and that all vaccinations remain current. Additionally, you need to be vigilant about your pet’s health in between annual check-ups.

It has always been important to seek veterinary care as soon as you notice anything amiss so as to avoid the possibility of something escalating into an emergency. However, with more pets in the community and less vets, it is crucial to seek veterinary assistance as early as possible.

Knowing what is normal behaviour for your pet is the key. Any deviation can often alert you to an underlying issue before there are any major symptoms. Far better for your pet to be taken to the vet when they are not quite right as opposed to when they are ‘suddenly’ extremely unwell.  

The best thing you can do for your pet is to know their normal behaviour with regards to, appetite, water consumption, toilet habits and general demeanour. Similarly, body condition and the quality of their hair coat together with dental hygiene should be assessed regularly.

You also want to note any changes in energy and activity levels, their sleep habits, their ability to run, jump and play and move about.  

Does your pet tire easily? Are they reluctant to go on long walks? Has your pet started vomiting occasionally? How often are you having to fill the water bowl?  

Changes can signify an underlying issue. Often the sooner you seek veterinary attention, the earlier you can make a diagnosis, begin treatment and return your pet to good health.  

Weight loss, inappetence, vomiting, gagging, a sudden voracious appetite, changes in stool colour and or consistency, difficulty urinating, excessive water consumption, weight loss, fainting, intermittent lameness, reluctance to jump, bad breath, hair loss or the appearance of skin lumps are just some of the symptoms that can signify an underlying disease process that warrants further investigation. Remember if you are unsure if your pet needs to be seen by a veterinarian, a quick call to your local clinic will help to determine the best course of action.  

Know your pets. For routine pet care; book ahead. Any changes from normal; book today!  

This article has been provided by Lucas Veterinary Clinic, 9 Merz Street, Lucas, PH: 5303 9000

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