Dr. Shaw’s List of Things he Wants You to Know

The end of the year is always popular for lists. This is my list of things a veterinarian wants you to know.

  1. Physical examinations, once or twice a year, are a must. Treating a problem early increases the chance for success, minimizes the pet’s discomfort and costs less in the long run.
  2. Don’t try to diagnose your pet. The internet is a great resource, but if your pet has a problem, they need professional eyes, ears, fingers and knowledge to assess the problem. Would you let Dr. Google treat your children?
  3. A microchip and a collar with a name tag are the best ways to assure your lost pet finds their way home.
  4. As I’ve said before, cats are great at hiding disease. Be aware of weight loss, changes in litter box or grooming behavior.
  5. Be smart about nutrition. If you love your pets, keep them lean. Visit our sponsor Bend Pet Express for a wide range of diets to increase the lifespan of your pets.
  6. Dogs and cats need routine dental care.  Tartar on their teeth is composed of bacteria which enters the bloodstream and damages the heart, liver and kidneys.
  7. Speaking of teeth, your small rodents also need yearly exams. Their teeth grow continually and need care so they can chew properly.
  8. Keep your medicines out of reach. Even routine meds like aspirin and acetaminophen can be toxic to dogs and cats.
  9. An appropriate vaccination schedule developed by you and your veterinarian can prevent the heartache of preventable infectious diseases.
  10. And finally, your pet is a member of your family. Love them, keep them safe, feed them well and they will always be there for you.

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