Old age is NOT LUCK! If your pet reaches an old age, then you must be a good pet guardian. I recommend that dogs and cats, five years and older, have an annual physical examination, and blood and urine analysis, each year. A physical examination is an art. It reveals abnormalities on the outside, and sometimes the inside. A blood and urine analysis allows veterinarians to view the inside health of your pet. Concerning horses, when a horse reaches 15 years, I advise a complete blood examination, but also a baseline ACTH, resting insulin and fasting blood glucose. Statistics reveal that horses can develop PPID, often referred to as Cushings, starting at age 15 years. Horses, unlike dogs and cats, receive biannual vaccines. That is a perfect time for a physical examination!! As a pet owner, I realize how difficult it is to know that something is wrong with your animal. What is even worse, IS NOT KNOWING!!! As a veterinarian, I can use my Western Veterinary Medicine tools to treat acute disease conditions, my Eastern Veterinary Medicine tools to treat the underlying root deficiency that allowed the acute disease to manifest itself, and nutrition to try and heal the body. Remember, veterinarians realize that each animal is an individual. A new practice, in appreciation of the individuality of each patient, allows veterinarians to look at the TREND of the blood and urine values EACH YEAR of your pet! No longer do I ask “do these numbers fall in the normal range” but “are these numbers rising, staying the same or becoming lower with age?” Only yearly blood and urine analysis can allow me to utilize this new tool called “TRENDING.”
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