Exams & Vaccination

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Pet Exams

A dog or cat annual exam is often called a wellness examination, which is similar to a physical for humans. 

Our pets are different from us in many ways, humans normally don’t chew on rocks and socks like our fur babies, but we’re similar in one way: physical exams. Humans make a yearly trip to the doctor to make sure everything is working correctly, and we should make the same consideration for our furry little friends.

Instead of waiting until the pet is ill, this checkup is done for a healthy pooch or kitty. It’s merely to make sure your pet is healthy and behaving normally.

 

These appointments become increasingly necessary when your fur baby gets older because dogs age much quicker than humans. For pets generally older than ten years, veterinarians recommend physical examinations every six months to ensure the most excellent care because their bodies break down around ten years old. On the opposite end, vets suggest bringing your furry friend in more frequently when they’re under one-year-old.

Many pet owners worry about the vet exam cost because bills can quickly add up if you visit more than once a year, but don’t worry, we’ll discuss how our prices can be incredibly reasonable.

 

Vaccinations

Vaccines help prevent many illnesses that affect pets. Vaccinating your pet has long been considered one of the easiest ways to help him live a long, healthy life. 

Vaccines help prevent many illnesses that affect pets. Vaccinating your pet has long been considered one of the easiest ways to help them live a long, healthy life. Not only are there different vaccines for different diseases, but there are also different types and combinations of vaccines for different stages of life.

Vaccines help prepare the body's immune system to fight the invasion of disease-causing organisms. Vaccines contain antigens, which look like the disease-causing organism to the immune system but don't actually cause disease. When the vaccine is introduced to the body, the immune system is mildly stimulated. If a pet is ever exposed to the real disease, their immune system is now prepared to recognize and fight it off entirely or reduce the severity of the illness.

Our Jacksonville, FL veterinarians can determine a vaccination plan that will provide the safest and best protection for your individual animal.

Learn more about each stage of life and what vaccinations are required below.

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Kitten Vaccinations
in Jacksonville, FL

Our veterinarians can best determine a vaccination schedule for your kitten. This will depend on the type of vaccine, your pet’s age, medical history, environment, and lifestyle.

Kittens automatically receive antibodies in the milk their mother produces if their mother has a healthy immune system. When the kitten is around seven to nine weeks of age, your veterinarian can begin to administer a series of vaccines at three- or four-week intervals until the kitten reaches 16 to 18 weeks of age.

Vaccines for panleukopenia (feline distemper), feline calicivirus, feline herpesvirus type I (rhinotracheitis) and rabies are considered core vaccines. Non-core vaccines are given depending on the cat's lifestyle; typically for the feline leukemia virus.

We can tailor your pet’s vaccinations according to their lifestyle and risks. There are core vaccines that are considered essential for your pet’s health (and even legally required in Duval county), but there may be additional vaccines that may benefit certain pets considered at greater risk. For instance, dogs who go to dog parks, groomers, boarding facilities etc. may be at higher risk for respiratory diseases; similarly, cats who spend time outside are at greater risk for certain diseases and may need additional vaccinations.

Our veterinary team can perform a risk assessment for your pet and make individualized recommendations for your furry family member.

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Puppy Vaccinations
in Jacksonville, FL

Our Jacksonville, FL veterinarians can best determine a vaccination schedule for your pet. This will depend on the type of vaccine, your pet’s age, medical history, environment, and lifestyle.

For puppies, if their mother has a healthy immune system, a puppy will most likely receive antibodies in the mother’s milk while nursing. Puppies should receive a series of vaccinations starting at 7 to 9 weeks of age and should be administered at three- to four-week intervals until 16 to 18 weeks of age..

We can tailor your pet’s vaccinations according to their lifestyle and risks. There are core vaccines that are considered essential for your pet’s health (and even legally required in Duval county), but there may be additional vaccines that may benefit certain pets considered at greater risk. For instance, dogs who go to dog parks, groomers, boarding facilities etc. may be at higher risk for respiratory diseases; similarly, cats who spend time outside are at greater risk for certain diseases and may need additional vaccinations.

 

Our veterinary team can perform a risk assessment for your pet and make individualized recommendations for your furry family member.

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Adult Pet Vaccinations
in Jacksonville, FL

Bringing your pet in for an annual diagnostic and wellness checkup can help reassure you that your dog or cat is healthy and/or help us detect hidden diseases or conditions early. Early detection can improve the prognosis of many diseases, keep medical costs down, and help your pet live longer. Many dogs and cats are good at hiding signs that something is wrong, so subtle changes in their health or behavior might be easy to overlook. And, depending on the disease, some pets don’t show any symptoms until it is too late.

 

Dogs and cats age far quicker than humans, so it is even more crucial for our companion animals to receive regular exams including screening lab panels. In addition, although age itself is not a disease but merely a result of being really good at living, the risks of arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, hormone disorders, and kidney and liver problems all increase with age.

 

During your pet’s wellness exam, we will perform a physical assessment, checking your dog or cat from nose to tail. We will also make sure your pet receives appropriate vaccinations and preventives depending on their lifestyle. We will perform a diagnostic workup, which may include blood, fecal, and urine tests to check for parasites and underlying diseases. We may also recommend that your pet receive dental care. By having these diagnostic tests when your pet is young and healthy we will have a baseline to know what is normal for them. This is critical as they near their senior years so that we can catch any changes quickly and intervene.

 

Because you spend the most time with your pet, you are your pet’s expert, as well as his or her greatest advocate. Please let us know if you’ve noticed any physical or behavioral changes in your pet, as well as any other concerns you might have.

 

Call us today to schedule your pet’s exam! If you have any questions, we would be happy to discuss the annual exam in more detail.

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Senior Pet Vaccinations
in Jacksonville, FL

As dogs and cats get older, they need more attention and special care. Our veterinarians can help your pet remain fit and healthy as he or she ages and help us catch any potential problems earlier, when they’re easier to treat or manage. Regular veterinary exams can actually help your pet live longer, too!

 

Diagnosing diseases and certain conditions early is important throughout a pet’s life, but it becomes even more critical when your dog or cat enters his or her senior years. The risks of arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, hormone disorders, and kidney and liver problems all increase with age. In addition, dogs and cats may not show any signs of even serious diseases until they are quite advanced.

 

Senior status varies depending on your pet’s breed and size. Smaller dogs tend to live longer than larger dogs, and cats generally live longer than dogs. We can help you determine what life stage your pet is in.

Before your dog or cat reaches senior status, we recommend that you bring your pet in for a baseline exam and diagnostic workup. This will give us a record of what’s normal for your pet so we can keep track of any changes. In most cases, we suggest this checkup for when your dog turns 7 years of age or your cat turns 8 years of age. For many senior pets a physical exam and blood work is recommended twice a year. A lot can change in six months, especially for older pets.

 

We can treat many symptoms that are commonly attributed to age, including general slowing down or decreased mobility associated with arthritis or confusion or increased anxiety or vocalization associated with cognitive dysfunction syndrome (similar to dementia in humans). We can also improve your pet’s quality of life in many ways: by identifying and preventing or reducing pain, recommending an appropriate nutrition and exercise plan, and suggesting environmental modifications to keep your pet comfortable. The earlier we are able to implement these treatments, the more successful the outcome for your pet.

We will tailor a senior wellness plan to your pet’s individual needs. If you have any questions, we would be happy to discuss our healthcare plan in more detail. Call us today to schedule your pet’s exam!