Getting Your Pet’s Blood Work. Advice from Your Local Veterinarian
When a veterinarian mentions blood work, many pet owners assume the worst. However, these tests are often an essential part of cat and dog wellness care. In many cases, they reveal information that suggests less-extreme and less-expensive treatment than an owner feared. For the furry patients who visit Best Friends Veterinary Hospital, these tests can help combat illness and contribute to a long and happy life.
When Does a Pet Need Blood Work?
Pet blood work serves four basic purposes. Veterinarians often recommend it as the initial diagnostic step when a pet is ill or injured. Anesthesia is filtered through the liver and kidneys so our doctors also test blood before a surgical or dental procedure requiring anesthesia. This reveals when anesthesia is safe for a pet or any modifications that might be required. Same-day tests sometimes eliminate the need for pet fasting.
Blood tests are also a part of pet wellness. They serve as an important preventative tool during recommended annual or bi-annual exams. Finally, blood test results help veterinarians monitor medication and make necessary adjustments.
How Our Practice Uses These Tests
In most cases, our blood tests are in-house and available within 30 minutes. Certain tests must be sent out for analysis.
The four most common tests our veterinarian is likely to suggest during a pet exam include:
- Complete blood count, or CBC, can reveal anemia, an infection, and/or inflammation.
- Urinalysis shows a urinary tract inflammation or infection and is an important tool even though it is not a blood test.
- Blood chemistry panels with electrolytes give our doctor information about a pet’s kidneys, liver, pancreas, hydration, and blood sugar level.
- Thyroid function testing determines whether the thyroid gland is working properly and whether a pet has thyroid disease, which is particularly common in older dogs and cats.
When blood work results are abnormal, our vet can quickly decide what should be the next step. It might be performing additional testing or beginning treatment. Blood tests are often the first line of defense against illness and save owners and their pets time traveling back and forth to see a veterinarian, receive a diagnosis, and begin treatment.
Schedule a Pet Exam
When was the last time a veterinarian evaluated your furry friend for a wellness exam? Best Friends Veterinary Hospital is a full-service facility equipped to handle medical, dental, and surgical issues plus emergency care. Dr. Anthony Warlick and our five associate veterinarians seek to provide the highest standard of preventative services in a caring, calm environment. Call us today at (931) 459-2006 to make an appointment for a pet exam at our family-friendly facility.