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Testing in Senior Pets

Although some age related diseases in your pet cannot be treated, the early detection of others can delay or at least minimise their effect on your pet’s quality of life. Some diseases can be very effectively treated.  Blood and urine testing in senior pets is key to early diagnosis and treatment.

shutterstock_221456365It can be very difficult for us to detect the early sub-clinical signs of age-related disease in our pets. Many treatable or preventable diseases may have no obvious signs early in their course. This is why physicians often suggest routine laboratory tests during our own physical exams.

Early diagnosis is an important key in the preventative health care of pets and is possible only through routine laboratory testing of apparently “healthy” animals.

The following is a description of the most commonly suggested diagnostic screening tests together with the most frequent abnormalities discovered:

Complete Blood Count (CBC)– Blood test to evaluate the number and type of red, white, and clotting cells. Abnormal values can be associated with bacterial or viral infection, anaemia, clotting diseases, and certain types of cancers.

Chemistry Profile (Chem)– Blood test to evaluate the function of many internal organs. Abnormalities can indicate systemic disorders including diabetes, kidney or liver disease, and electrolyte abnormalities.

Urinalysis (U/A)– Urine samples provide valuable information about kidney function as well as screening for infections and diabetes.

Thyroid Hormone Level (T4)–  Blood test to measure the amount of circulating thyroid hormone. Deficiency is common in dogs resulting in lethargy, weight gain, and dermatological problems. Increased levels are common in senior cats resulting in weight loss, increased appetite and thirst, and heart problems.

 For patients over seven years of age, we recommend testing every 12 months.  This allows us not only to spot when something is abnormal, but also to track changes in values which may be a concern.

During June and July, Carindale Vet are performing special senior health starter consultations.  This not only includes a thorough examination for the vet but also screening laboratory tests at a special bundled price.  For more information or to book your pet for their senior starter consultation, call the clinic on 3849 4912.  Or contact us via email on info@carindalevet.com