Dog Health Care Checklist
The following are preventive health care options available for your dog. Please review the available procedures which we strongly recommend to keep your pet healthy and guard against disease. Ask a staff member or your doctor if you have any questions regarding a procedure or need more information.
___ Complete Physical Exam: Exams should be done once a year, dogs older than 7 years of age every 6 months.Examination of general appearance, weight, attitude, skin, muscle, bones, joints, heart, lungs, digestive system, eyes, ears, nervous system, urinary/reproductive system, lymph nodes, gums, and teeth for any abnormalities.
___ Vaccinations: Frequency of vaccinations varies with each vaccine. We evaluate each dog's risk of disease to determine which vaccines are needed. Vaccinations are important in disease prevention of ___respiratory disease, Distemper, Hepatitis (DHP), ___Parvo, ___Kennel cough, ___Leptospirosis, ___Dental vaccine, and ___Rabies.
___ Intestinal Parasite Screen: Annual screening is recommended. The test screens for eggs released by intestinal parasites. A positive test will help guide the intestinal parasite medication program. Not detecting parasites does not rule out that the animal does not have parasites--it may not have any in that particular sample. Tapeworm segments are the egg packets and are better diagnosed by seeing dried segments attached to the hair around the anus.
___ Intestinal Parasite Medication: Some parasites are transmissible to humans and can cause disease in the dog and people, therefore we recommend intestinal parasite medication on a monthly basis. Common dog intestinal parasites are the roundworm, hookworm, tapeworm, whipworm and coccidia. Raccoons also shed roundworms transmissible to dogs and people. The dog gets a tapeworm infection by eating a flea or rodent, the intermediate host for the tapeworm. Droncit is highly effective in eliminating the tapeworm but preventing ingestion of the intermediate host and good flea control will help prevent future infections.
___ Heartworm Test: Testing is recommended every year. Heartworm disease is present in the Portland area and Oregon. The blood test screens for the presence of a parasite that lives in the heart of a dog. Larvae are transmitted by mosquitoes. The monthly preventative which kills the larva is recommended year round to prevent infection.
___ Heartworm Medication: Heartworm medication is given once a month all year round. It prevents heartworm infection and treats for roundworm and hookworm infection which can also affect people.
___ Urinalysis: Urinalysis should be done every 6-12 months depending on age, medications or disease condition. It evaluates kidney function and also aids in the detection of crystals in the urine, bladder infection, bladder stones, bladder cancer, diabetes and other systemic diseases.
___ Blood Profile: Blood profiles should be performed annually, after a dog reaches 7 years of age, we recommend running blood profiles every 6 months. It is also recommended prior to anesthesia. Detection of health problems early minimizes amount of medical care needed to treat the problem. A plan can be developed to decrease the risks for the problem to be life threatening. Lab tests detect anemia, dehydration, blood protein levels, and screens electrolytes, kidney, liver, and pancreas.
___ Thyroid Gland Evaluation: Testing dogs over the age of 7 years is recommended annually. It tests for the presence of a low level of thyroid hormone, common in older dogs or dogs with skin disease.
___ Flea Products: It is important to treat all the animals in the household once a month. We can recommend the best product to safely kill the adult flea or tick. Topical flea products need to be applied monthly. Controlling the adult flea and its' bite has greatly diminished flea allergies that cause the dog to chew their skin and leads to hair loss. Ticks can transmit diseases to your pet.
___ Microchip Identification: A microchip, the size of a grain of rice, can be implanted under the skin between the shoulder blades at any age. Scanners used by veterinarians, humane societies and shelters can detect the chip and the information it carries can result in the return of a lost pet to its owner.
___ Spay/Neuter: Surgery can be done as early as 2-6 months of age and should be done in any adult not used for breeding. The surgery prevents dogs from reproducing thereby helping with the pet overpopulation problem. Other advantages include less wandering, less territorial or aggressive behavior, and lower incidence of mammary cancer in the female and certain hormone related cancers in the male.
___ Dental Services: Annual professional cleaning of the teeth under anesthesia helps promote a healthy mouth. Dental exams may reveal tartar buildup resulting in gum disease, fractured teeth, retained baby teeth or mouth infections. At home, brushing teeth, OraVet Home Care, chewing flat rawhide chews or Prescription Diet T/D will