Annual Wellness Exams

Why your pet needs an annual wellness exam


Most likely you visit your doctor or dentist at least once a year. Are you taking your dog or cat for a wellness exam at least once a year? These exams are even more important for your pet because pets age faster than you. So each annual exam for them is similar to you visiting your doctor every five to seven years.

The old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” rings true for your pet’s good health. Our dogs and cats can't tell us if they are sick, much like young children who can’t always let us know when they don’t feel well. It is up to pet owners and parents to schedule regular checkups with their veterinarian and/or their child’s physician. These wellness exams can prevent serious complications later when a condition or disease is uncovered. Effective prevention is always safer and less expensive than treatment because the exam, not the disease, can prevent complications.

During the wellness exam, your veterinarian will perform many valuable services, including:


  • Ask about the history of your pet’s health
  • Note weight and age changes since the last exam
  • Ask about any lifestyle changes, such as a previously indoor cat that now goes outside or a dog that now takes walks with you on wildlife trails
  • Perform a physical exam of teeth, mouth, eyes, ears, skin, coat and paws
  • Ask you about any unusual behavior in your pet, such as drinking more water, eating less, sleeping more or a change in activity level
  • Look for early disease signs and recommend testing for suspected diseases including the heart, liver and kidney diseases, arthritis and cancer
  • Recommend the vaccinations your pet needs to prevent diseases


It’s important to schedule an annual wellness exam for your pet. This exam will help guide your veterinarian to recommend the optimal vaccinations your pet needs based on age, health history and lifestyle, and helps ensure your pet’s very best health.