Put preventive care first in 2013, veterinarian advises

Preventive care is the most important strategy for keeping pets healthy, writes veterinarian Lidja Gillmeister. Preventive care includes regular veterinary visits, vaccines, internal and external parasite control, proper nutrition and exercise, and routine dental care at the veterinary clinic and at home, advises Dr. Gillmeister. A good relationship with a veterinarian is the foundation for the best possible preventive care, Dr. Gillmeister adds.


By Lidja Gillmeister, DVM

The New Year is a great opportunity for individuals to set goals for health and prosperity; and this year, why not consider making a few resolutions to help keep your pets healthy as well? When it comes to pet health advice, most veterinarians will agree that preventative health care is the single greatest gift you can give your furry and feathered friends. With that in mind, here are some tips to help jumpstart a healthy New Year for your beloved pets.

Top preventative health tips for pets

  • Schedule      a veterinary appointment: don’t wait for Fido to start exhibiting signs of disease or injury. Instead, make regular veterinary check-ups part of your routine – and stay ahead of the game with improved chances for early detection and prevention.
  • Say      yes to vaccinations: talk to your vet      about the vaccinations that are right for your pet, and stay current with      the appropriate treatments.
  • Focus      on nutrition and exercise: pet      obesity is a grown trend throughout the U.S., and just as in humans it can      lead to a number of serious health concerns including diabetes and      arthritis. Prioritize active playtime with your pet, and take dogs for      daily walks. In addition, make sure to discuss proper nutrition with your      veterinarian in order to select the best possible food source for your      pet.
  • Take      a proactive role: whether the issue      is getting your pet spayed or neutered or scheduling behavioral training      sessions, it is important to take action early. Unless you are serious      about breeding your pets, get them fixed – and invest in some basic      behavioral training early on to ensure a better quality of life for both      you and your pets.
  • Seek      out safe pest and parasite prevention:      ask your vet about the right flea and tick prevention methods for your      pets to prevent inconvenience, discomfort and the threat of disease. Not      all products are safe and effective, so do your homework before giving      your pet topical or oral treatments. Also, schedule routine fecal      examinations and dewormings to check for intestinal parasites, which can      cause disease in both animals and humans.
  • Don’t      forget dental care: don’t skimp on dental      health care for your pet. Take your dog or cat in for professional      cleanings, and make at-home tooth brushing a habit early on. Your      veterinarian can give you suggestions to make this process easier and more      effective.

Ultimately, preventative health care for pets is all about common sense, customized recommendations and a good relationship with your local veterinarian. If you have a new pet in the family this year, now’s the time to visit La Jolla Veterinary Hospital for a complete examination and personalized care. Visit us online to learn more and schedule an appointment today, at www.lajollavet.com.

One Response to “Put preventive care first in 2013, veterinarian advises”

  1. Linda Stitt says:

    I realize that good dental care is a must but what do you recommend for dental chews for my dogs?
    Thank you,

Leave a Reply to Linda Stitt