During yearly physical exams, your veterinarian is able to get a good grasp on the general physical condition and overall health of your pet. However, it is hard to really determine what is going on within your pet’s body unless we go inside and have a look. Since we can’t physically “go inside” the body, we use our Wellness test along with yearly physical exams to help us get the inside story on your pet’s overall health and wellness!
What is a Wellness test?
A Wellness test is the analysis of whole blood (Complete Blood Count, CBC) and serum (Chemistry) to give us a profile of your pet’s cell and organ function.
The Complete Blood Count or CBC portion of the Wellness test gives us a lot of important information on the cells in the body. Red Blood Cell’s which carry oxygen to the tissues of the body and White Blood Cell’s which play an essential role in the body’s defense against infection. As well we are able to asses the production of platelets. Though small in size, platelets are important factors in the clotting process and are vital in the halt of the bleeding process.
The Chemistry portion of the Wellness test is extremely important in that it allows us to determine the function of vital organs such as the liver, kidneys, pancreas, thyroid, parathyroid and intestinal tract. This test can also indicate certain conditions such as dehydration, different endocrine diseases and certain types of tumours.
When should my pet have a wellness test?
Ideally, both dogs and cats should have a wellness test every year with their annual physical exam and vaccines. Puppies and kittens when in to be neutered, will have pre-surgical blood work done, which is essentially a wellness, to determine they are healthy enough for the procedure. Pre-surgical blood work starts your pet off on the right foot, and gives us baseline values for their individual profile. From this we can effectively asses their health and track their wellness progress every year!