Preventative Care

At Ark Veterinary Hospital, we recommend twice-yearly checkups for all pets, especially for animals in their middle and older years (six and older). During checkups, the doctors often find health issues like dental problems, ear infections and occasionally more serious things that would have gone undetected without the checkup.

Another reason we recommend twice-yearly exams is because they give us an easy way to split up vaccinations so that your pet isn’t getting them all at once. Plus, these twice-yearly wellness appointments make health care easier on the budget, since they divide up your pet’s recommended care.

Every screening exam is a great opportunity for you to discuss any concerns you have about your pet’s health with one of our veterinarians. We will review topics such as weight, nutrition, allergies and dental care, as well as any lifestyle and age-related changes that may impact your pet’s health.

Physical Exams

A thorough physical examination is the foundation of our high-quality pet care and can tell us a lot of about your pet’s health. Our exam appointments might take a bit longer than you have experienced elsewhere, but that gives you time to ask questions and to go over Ark’s customized “Exam Report” that each of our clients is given, detailing the exam findings and doctor’s recommendations for your pet.

During your pet’s physical exam, our veterinarian will perform a nose-to-tail examination. If your pet has symptoms of an underlying medical condition, we will discuss treatment options to get your pet back to good health as quickly as possible.

As your pet grows older, it is especially important to bring your cat or dog in for a checkup to ensure there are no hidden signs of trouble. If they begin to show signs of illness such as change in eating or drinking habits, change in weight, lethargy, vomiting or any unusual behavior, please schedule an appointment with us for a physical exam.

Flea, Tick and Parasite Prevention

We provide safe and effective flea-and-tick prevention for dogs and cats. There are several different options that we are happy to discuss with you.

Fleas
Fleas are wingless insects that are capable of jumping great heights. They are quite tough and can live up to 100 days on their hosts and lay anywhere from 20 to 40 eggs per day. Fleas prefer warm temperatures, making your pet an ideal host. In addition to biting your pet and causing itchiness and possibly skin sores, fleas can transmit tapeworms to your pet.

Ticks
Ticks are a type of arachnid that spends most of their life living off of their host. Ticks are capable of laying thousands of eggs at once and can survive even in near-freezing temperatures. Many potentially deadly diseases such as Lyme disease, Ehrlichia, Anaplasmosis and Rocky Mountain spotted fever can be transmitted by tick bites, so it’s crucial to protect your pet against ticks.

Parasites
Intestinal parasites include worms and protozoan parasites. The common worms are roundworms, hookworms, whipworms and tapeworms. Coccidia and Giardia are also common intestinal parasite infections in our area. We recommend cats and dogs have a stool test at least once yearly to check for these intestinal parasites.

Heartworm
Heartworm infection is caused by a parasite that mosquito bites can pass to your dog. Heartworm infection damages a dog’s heart and lungs and is deadly if untreated. Prevention is easy and safe—we recommend that all dogs take a monthly heartworm preventive. We also recommend a yearly blood test that screens for heartworm infection, Lyme infection and other tick-borne diseases.