New Puppies & Kittens Are Welcome
Oh boy, you just got a brand new pet! Now what? Bringing a kitten or puppy into your home for the first time can be both joyful and overwhelming. They are so full of love and energy and curiosity. In the early weeks and months, your new four-legged bundle of joy will require a lot of attention and patience as your pet acclimates to his or her new environment.
One of the most important things you do when you first get your pet is to schedule a wellness exam with one of our veterinarians at Edmonds Veterinary Hospital.
This will allow us to make sure your new pet is healthy and will also give us the opportunity to help protect your pet from nasty parasites and diseases.
Your New Pet Exam
When you bring your new puppy or kitten to us for the first time, we will give your pet a complete nose-to-tail exam to see if there are any health issues or congenital abnormalities present. Your vet will do a thorough examination of your new pet's:
- Heart rate—Your vet will listen for any irregularity or heart murmur
- Lungs—We want to make sure the lungs are healthy and clear of fluid
- Mouth, including teeth, gums, and overall bite—Dental care is essential to your pet's overall health
- Eyes and ears—Infections can often show up in animal's eyes and ears
- Abdominal cavity—Your vet will check major organs for any abnormalities
- Overall body condition, including muscles, coat, and weight, to confirm there are no signs of malnutrition or illness
- Skin and fur—Making sure there is not a presence of fleas or potential dermatological issues
Protection From Parasites and Disease
Did you know that puppies and kittens are commonly born with intestinal parasite infections acquired from their mothers? It is essential that your new pet be de-wormed and put on a vaccination schedule that matches your pet's specific needs and living environment.
The following are guidelines; all vaccinations are customized based on a pet's lifestyle and risk factors.
Dogs—At your first visit, your dog will receive the DHPP vaccine, which protects against distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza virus, and parvovirus. At your second visit, your puppy will get a DHPP booster and a bordetella (“kennel cough”) vaccination.
At your third visit, DHPP and bordetella boosters will be administered. Based on consultation with your veterinarian, your puppy may also require vaccination against leptospirosis. The fourth appointment usually takes place at 14–16 weeks of age, at which time your puppy will get his or her rabies vaccination.
Cats—At their first visit, kittens receive the FVRCPC vaccine, which protects against viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, panleukopenia, and chlamydia. At the second visit, your kitten will receive a FVRCPC booster and FeLV (feline leukemia vaccine).
At the third visit, they will receive a FeLV Booster and, depending on age, their rabies vaccine.
Pet Nutrition Counseling
There are so many options to feed your new pet, and it can be overwhelming to try to choose what is right. We will take as much time as you need to discuss your pet's best options for good nutrition. Not every pet is the same and different sizes, breeds, and health conditions require a diet that is specifically suited to each individual pet.