Because our companions age faster than we do, they develop diseases and conditions in a short period of time and conditions progress much faster. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), 30 million pets are older than 8 years of age, and we know that their health care needs are much more intensive than a middle-aged healthy adult. Because of this, it is recommended to enroll your pet in a Senior Wellness program. According to the AVMA, companions are considered to be “senior” at 7 years of age.
Why are Senior Wellness Programs important?
Senior Wellness Programs are important because if disease or illness is caught early on treatment can begin to treat or cure. As your companions age they have a greater risk of developing certain diseases and conditions. Early detection and treatment for senior companions can enable your veterinarian to extend their life and improve the quality of living. Each year of a pet’s life represents 5-10% of its total life span. Performing procedures included in a Senior Wellness Exam once each year is the same as once every 5-7 years for a senior adult human.
What conditions is my senior companion susceptible to?
Much like humans, our pets are increasingly vulnerable to the following medical conditions and diseases as they reach their later years of life:
- Heart disease
- Dental problems
- Liver disease
- Digestive disorders
- Kidney disease
- Malignant and benign tumors
- Loss of hearing and vision
What is included in a Senior Wellness Program?
The Senior Wellness screening for your pet includes:
- White Blood Cell Analysis
- Red Blood Cell Analysis
- Platelet Count
- Blood Profile (evaluates major organs, i.e. liver, kidneys, pancreas, etc.)
- Fecal Analysis
- Thyroid Screening
- X-rays of the chest and abdomen
Your veterinarian will establish a Senior Wellness Profile from the various tests, screenings, and analyses. It is advised to provide your veterinarian with stool and urine samples to reduce your senior companion’s stress level during its visit. It has been said you can tell a lot about a person by their trash. The same is true for the “trash” of our companions. One of the first signs of kidney degeneration is apparent on the evaluation of the urine (urinalysis). Our pets can’t talk and hide illness and disease well. Physical examinations can only detect diseases producing clinical or physical signs. As pets approach the “Senior Years,” it is the time to become more concerned with the early diagnosis and detection of internal problems that are not readily apparent on routine physical examination.
Senior wellness programs make pets feel their best and have the longest, productive, and useful life. Nothing can prevent the aging of our companions, but many things can be done to slow the process and make our pets more comfortable. Senior pet wellness helps with early detection of emerging conditions, utilizes preventative maintenance to decrease chances of developing problems or complications, and aids in diet and exercise management.
Delavan Lakes Veterinary Clinic is proud to announce our Senior Wellness program-an ongoing flat-fee service program aimed to benefit the lives of aging pets. We are currently offering two Senior Wellness programs, as well as a chance to save on your next dental cleaning. Both programs offer a 20% savings off of standard services. If your pet is enrolled in our Senior Wellness program, you will receive a friendly reminder when your pet is due for a wellness visit to our clinic. Your pet’s health is our primary concern. Call us at (262) 728-8622 to learn how you can protect your pet’s health and save at the same time.