As we know, our pet’s can’t come right out and tell us when they aren’t feeling well. Knowing their personality is a key factor in deciding when they are sick (IE. appetite changes, behavioral changes) but unfortunately, these things can happen later in the course of a disease. Our domesticated dogs and cats have inherited the ability to hide many symptoms until late in the disease process, a trait passed down to them from their wild ancestors. This was initially a survival issue (show weakness and get removed from the pack) but today, it just delays when your pet shows illness. In order to help keep your pets healthy and catch things early, blood work is performed to find subtle abnormalities that haven’t begun to show clinical symptoms yet. As technology improves, testing becomes quicker and more accurate allowing the veterinarian to make recommendations / treatment suggestions earlier. This should ultimately lead to keeping your pet healthier for longer periods of time. Which is ultimately the name of the game at our Tampa animal clinic.
Our veterinarians in Tampa generally recommend routine, screening lab work for all pets over the age of 7 once yearly. Also, our animal clinic routinely performs blood work prior to procedures that require anesthesia to help make things safer (many times in our in office laboratory while you wait) Since we have been doing this, our team has detected many cases of subtle illness that we were able to make lifestyle / diet changes and delayed significantly the onset of overall clinical disease.
In summary, early detection through routine, preventative blood screening is a good way for your veterinarian to increase the longevity of your dog or cat through early intervention and treatment of many disease processes. We all want our pets to live a long life, and this is one of the ways to help achieve that goal.