Getting a puppy or kitten is an exciting time for everyone in your family. Once you’ve got them settled in, one of your first priorities should be taking them for their first exam with your veterinarian. However, if this is your first pet, or you’ve not taken an animal for an introductory veterinary visit before, you may be wondering what to expect. Here’s the lowdown on some of the things that may happen during this visit.
Unsurprisingly, one of the first things that your vet may do is perform a physical examination of your new pet to make sure that they have come to you healthy and in good condition. This will be a nose to tail check-over that will look at all aspects of your pet’s body, from the obvious things like the condition of their coat, their eyes, and the way that they stand or move, to taking their temperature and feeling their abdomen to ensure that there are no abnormalities. If anything unusual is detected, further tests may be recommended which your vet will explain to you in more detail.
Vaccinations play a crucial part of your pet’s preventative care and have saved the lives of countless animals over the years. At your pet’s first appointment, your vet will talk to you about which vaccinations your pet should have and why, as well as set up a schedule for these shots. It’s important that you attend these appointments as scheduled. Initially, your pet’s immunity will need to be built gradually using a series of lower doses of each vaccine. They will not be fully protected unless they have received the complete doses. Once they become an adult, they will still need to have regular boosters to keep them properly protected at all times.
Although this won’t happen at this appointment, your veterinarian will almost certainly use this time to talk to you about the importance of spaying/neutering your pet when they are old enough. This elective procedure has a range of benefits for your animal, from reducing their risks of certain health conditions like uterine or testicular cancer to improving their behavior. You’ll also be playing an important part in keeping overpopulation down.
Your vet will want to talk to you about the importance of making sure your puppy or kitten is properly protected from parasites. Fleas, ticks, and other parasites can make your pet very miserable and there can even be side effects on their health and wellbeing. For example, fleas can cause intense itching, which can lead to broken skin and skin infections. There is a wide range of parasite preventatives, and your vet will be able to recommend the most suitable variety for your new furry friend.
If you’ve not had a pet before, or even if you have, you may have questions you would like to answer to ensure that you are giving them the best possible care. This visit is the perfect opportunity to ask them and to get some expert advice from your vet. Whether it’s what and how much you should feed them, the exercise that they should be getting, or how to train them, your vet will be full of helpful information.
If you would like to learn more about what to expect from the first exam for your puppy or kitten, contact Home Sweet Home at (817) 522-1516 to schedule an appointment.