Want to help your pet live a healthier life? Well,
one of the keys to success is preventive care. It can help prevent some diseases, as well as help you and your vet catch many problems earlier, which may improve your pet’s prognosis.
So how do you do that? We’ve got expert advice for
making preventive care a priority, from scheduling regular veterinary visits to
learning how to feed your pet the right way.
Schedule a Wellness Exam
We know there’s a lot on your to-do list, but you shouldn’t
wait until your pet shows signs of pain or illness to take him to the vet. Call your veterinarian now and schedule your animal’s physical exam for a time
that’s convenient for you. The biggest plus of taking your dog or cat to the
veterinarian for regular checkups is that your vet can sometimes detect health
issues before they become big (and potentially more serious) problems. If your pet is
fearful of visiting the vet, don’t let that discourage you; Dr. Marty Becker has some great advice on helping your pet learn to love the vet.
Brush Up on Brushing Your Pet's Teeth
Here’s an upsetting fact: More than 85 percent of cats and
dogs over 4 years old are affected by periodontal disease, which, if left
untreated, can lead to bad breath, difficulty eating, gum recession and tooth
loss. Furthermore, the bacteria associated with dental disease can travel in the bloodstream and infect the organs — potentially causing serious complications.
Your best defense against dental disease is to get your
pet’s teeth professionally cleaned by a veterinarian and to brush his teeth
daily. If you’ve never brushed your pet’s teeth before, the key is to start
off slowly and gradually work your way up to regularly brushing his teeth.
Stock Up on Parasite Preventive
We know it’s winter, and it seems unlikely that
fleas, ticks, mosquitoes or other parasites could pose a threat to pets this
time of year. But contrary to popular belief, parasites are a year-round
problem. Skipping a few months of preventive medication because it’s cold
outside or to make your supply last longer is not worth the risk. Believe us,
it’s much easier to give your animal a parasite preventive than it is to rid your
house of a flea infestation.
Exercise has numerous health and mental benefits for cats
and dogs: It can help them channel excess energy, prevent boredom, stay in shape and provide mental stimulation. As an added benefit, exercising
with your pet can help boost your health. It’s a win-win for everyone! But don’t use
bad weather as an excuse for not exercising; check out these fun indoor
activities for dogs and cats.