With advances in veterinary medicine, many health problems commonly experienced by older pets, such as dental disease, diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, hypothyroidism and some forms of cancer can now be successfully treated if detected early enough. We recommend bi-annual blood and urine screening tests to detect early signs of diseases in time to reverse the effects or at least prevent further deterioration. We begin each senior screening with a complete physical examination. In older pets, we are especially alert for any signs of heart murmur, lung congestion, skin problems, weight loss, eye problems such as cataracts, enlarged lymph nodes or enlarged abdominal organs. We also conduct a thorough dental examination to detect gum disease, oral tumors or ulcers, broken teeth or tartar build-up.
We develop a complete blood profile to determine if your pet’s major organs are functioning properly. Specifically, we check liver enzymes, kidney enzymes, muscle enzymes, electrolytes such as potassium, chloride and sodium, and blood sugar level. We also perform a complete blood count, including red and white cell counts, hemoglobin, etc., and check your pet’s thyroid hormone level (T4) to look for abnormalities in organ function and signs of endocrine disease. Finally, we look for blood abnormalities such as anemia, bleeding disorders, infections or leukemic disorders. Test results are available within minutes from our fully-equipped in-house laboratory.
We perform a urinalysis to check for sugar, crystals, protein, blood and white blood cells in your pet’s urine. These indicators are helpful in diagnosing diabetes, kidney disease, cystitis and other urinary tract problems.
Our senior pet screening also includes direct digital chest x-rays to detect heart enlargement, signs of lung tumors, infection or age-related changes such as emphysema. We also use our digital radiography equipment to check for enlarged lymph nodes that could indicate an infection or cancer. We monitor all senior patients’ blood pressure using our ultrasonic doppler flowmeter.