Did you know that a physical exam, coupled with a thorough history of the patient, are two of the best diagnostic tools a veterinarian has? The answers you provide to our questions about your pet can provide valuable information to help guide the veterinarian in determining what ails your furry friend. See our page on Preventative Medicine for more information on physical exams.
In use for approximately two years, our digital x-ray equipment has greatly improved not only the quality of our images, but the ease with which they’re developed. Not just for finding broken bones, x-rays (radiographs) can help the veterinarian diagnose or monitor many other types of conditions as well. They can be useful in diagnosing diseases of the heart and lungs, finding tumors, or counting how many puppies or kittens are in a litter! To determine if a pet has an obstruction, we often use a contrast medium, called barium, to more clearly view the intestines and stomach.
Ultrasound is the use of sound waves to create a non-invasive look at the internal organs of our patients. We are very proud of the number of referrals we receive from area veterinarians requesting Dr. Cherry perform an ultrasound. If an x-ray is a photograph of what’s happening inside your pet, then think of an ultrasound as a movie! An ultrasound can give a more complete picture of internal organs such as spleen, liver, and kidneys.
Not only are we able to do in house labwork, but we also have two different outside labs that pick up samples daily. This allows quick return of results to help insure the quickest diagnosis possible. When evaluating blood and urine samples, we look at many of the same values a human doctor does- although the normal levels can vary. Among other things, examination of blood samples can tell us if your pet is dehydrated, anemic, has problems clotting, has an infection, if their organs are functioning normally, as well as testing for many specific disease processes.
Anyone who has ever had a problem with fleas in their home can tell you it’s much easier, and more cost effective, to prevent an infestation than to try to get rid of one! The same is true of all parasites! Your pet’s environment and lifestyle will determine how often we recommend checking a stool sample for intestinal parasites, but annual heartworm testing and year-round preventatives are recommended across the board. Heartworm and parasite preventative is easily combined into one monthly in-home treatment and the staff will gladly recommend the best product for your pet.