Your Pet's Wellness Care

Wellness Care is the Key to
Your Pet's Long and Happy Life Wellness Exam

Burlington Veterinary Hospital's mission is to be the premier veterinary hospital in our area by providing quality, progressive and personalized veterinary care that meets all the needs of our clients and their pets. We offer a wide range of medical services for dogs, cats, rabbits, hampsters, ferrets, gerbils and rodents.

Our level of expertise is further enhanced by our ability to work collaboratively and our dedication to stay current with the latest veterinary techniques and medications.

The basis of our model of care is prevention. As medical professionals, we understand that the most effective means of providing your pet a long and happy life – while minimizing the lifetime cost of care – is through preventive medicine. This is why we highly recommend regular wellness exams, appropriate vaccines, microchip lost pet identification, dental care, and proper nutrition.

Preventive medicine also includes being excellent communicators. The staff at Burlington Veterinary Hospital believes that educating our clients and being as open as possible to your questions and concerns are vital aspects of ensuring a lifetime of good health for your pet. Sharing our experience and knowledge with you is a high priority in order for you to provide the best homecare possible for your pet.

Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we realize our pets may experience illness or injury. The skill, experience and extensive education of our doctors and staff at Burlington Veterinary Hospital enables us to effectively manage complex medical, dental and surgical challenges. Additionally, our relationships with veterinary specialists ensure that your pet will receive the prompt and appropriate care of a specialist when necessary.

We'll work each day to provide you and your pet with the highest level of service within a safe, clean and welcoming facility.

Please take a look at the services we offer and why we believe they are important to the proper care of your pet. If you would like to set up an appointment or have any questions please call us at (781) 270-0044.

Your Pet's Wellness Exam

Your pets can't always tell you where it hurts. The basis of any preventive medical regimen is regular wellness exams. A comprehensive physical exam at Burlington Veterinary Hospital allows our doctors to compile a list of clues that can help uncover a problem. Early detection and treatment are essential to avoid undue suffering and to prolong the quality and longevity of your pet's life.

At home, watch for subtle changes in your pet's body weight, appetite, water intake, urination and bowel habits, as well as general attitude and activity level. These changes may be signs of medical problems. Lumps and bumps under the skin may seem harmless, but can be cancerous. Ear infections and abscessed teeth and gum disease are common, painful conditions that may not become obvious until seriously advanced. A comprehensive physical exam is the tool to evaluate your dog's, cat's or other pet's health status and to help you make informed decisions about the care of your special companion.

Pets age at a much more rapid rate than do humans. We recommend a complete physical examination at least once a year, but more frequent exams are encouraged. All pets should receive these annual examinations so that we can make sure there are no health issues and we can answer any questions you may have. We recommend exams twice a year for senior pets, animals over seven years of age. Wellness exams allow us to get a general picture of your pet's overall health and are invaluable in diagnosing and treating your companion.

During your pet's wellness checkup, a veterinarian at Burlington Veterinary Hospital will:

Listen to your pet's heart – Early signs of cardiac disease such as heart murmurs and abnormal heartbeat patterns known as arrhythmias can be heard through a stethoscope. Discovering these initial indicators of trouble ahead can lead to identifying and treating the underlying condition before it becomes a more serious health threat.

Listen to your pet's lungs – Health issues such as infections, obstructive diseases and other respiratory problems can be detected by listening to your pet's lungs.

Check your pet's teeth and oral cavity – Examining your pet's mouth and teeth is an important part of your pet's wellness exam. Gingivitis, if left untreated, can lead to loss of teeth and a more severe problem called periodontal disease. Very young animals, such as kittens and puppies, also need to be checked to ensure they are developing an appropriate bite and that they are losing their baby teeth at the right time. We also take the time to discuss proper home dental care with you.

Wellness Check-Up for Your PetEvaluate your pet's vision – Many diseases if found early can be easily treated. Conditions such as glaucoma can be prevented through regular care and screenings.

Look into your pet's ears – As with dental disease, ear disease is relatively common in many types of pets. Issues such as allergies, reactions to certain foods, mites, fleas and other parasites can all cause and contribute to otitis or ear disease. Though you may feel this is an area that can be well-handled at home, the fact is that many ear diseases are difficult to detect and require medical attentiont.

Palpate your pet's lymph nodes, abdomen and skin – We look for unusual lumps or swellings as well as skin discolorations, lesions or patterns of hair loss or thinning. Certain abnormalities indicate the presence of more systemic problems, especially metabolic diseases, which most commonly occur in middle-aged animals.

Palpate the joints and muscles – We evaluate your pet for swollen and painful joints, decreased muscle tone and variations in muscle size between the legs. We also observe your pet's gait for developmental issues. In puppies, we look for early indications of hip or elbow problems. For older pets, we look for signs of arthritis, which can be well treated if found early.

Request additional laboratory tests – A complete physical examination includes a heartworm test, fecal flotation test for intestinal parasites, and a red blood cell count as anemia (decrease in the number of red blood cells) can indicate the presence of a number of disease processes. For senior pets, we strongly recommend a complete blood cell count and a chemistry profile in order to create a baseline of systemic health and to detect any emergent disease processes.

Regular Blood Testing

A complete physical includes a heartworm test, parasite screening, and should include a full blood workup. Not only can a full chemistry panel and complete blood count identify the presence of underlying disease processes, but these tests help create a baseline should your pet become ill between routine examinations. Additionally, blood work is necessary if your veterinarian recommends a dental cleaning, removal of a skin mass, or any other procedure that requires anesthesia.

Fleas and Ticks

Fleas and ticks can cause more than simple discomfort. They can carry serious diseases. Ticks of course are the main carriers of Lyme disease. Fleas carry tapeworm.

Fleas are found on your pet during warm weather; however, if left untreated, they can be a nuisance year-round. Ticks tend to thrive in wooded areas or in high grass. It's often difficult to keep your pets away from tick infested areas, so if they do go exploring, check them when they come inside.

There are several medications we can recommend to make sure your pet is protected from these pests. Please ask a staff member for the medication that is best for your pet. Prevention is key!

We also recommend complete blood testing annually for all pets over the age of seven.