Our Faithful Senior Companions
Deserve Extra Attention
Pets are living longer than ever before thanks to advances in veterinary medicine and care. With this increased lifespan, however, comes increased susceptibility to illness and disease. By early recognition of our pets aging processes, we can more quickly take the necessary action to ensure that their golden years are quality years.
Around the age of 7, most pets are considered to be senior citizens, although this actual number may vary depending on species, size, and breed. Smaller breeds of dogs generally live longer than larger breeds, reaching senior status later in life. Cats may live even longer, and some cats will reach into the 20s. As pets age so relatively quickly, it is important that our senior pets be examined frequently. One year is roughly the equivalent of five to seven human years! It is therefore recommended that senior pets have a wellness exam performed every six months.
Senior wellness exams include lab work. Establishing baseline test values for both blood and urine can provide invaluable information for even a seemingly healthy pet, as subtle changes in the results are often the first detectable sign of illness. When discovered early, many conditions are far more easily managed and some may even be completely resolved. With our full in-house diagnostic laboratory, the staff at the Animal Hospital by the Sea can perform laboratory screening tests quickly, often while you wait. Semi-annual checkups are also a great time to discuss difficulties or alterations in your pet’s life, such as any behavior or mobility changes. We will also be happy to go over the differences in nutritional and exercise requirements for your pets as they age and review the best way to manage any chronic illnesses that can afflict the elderly.
- Annual physical exam
- We will check your pet’s general appearance, temperature, body weight, heart, lungs, ears, eyes, thyroid glands, and skin. We’ll also give your pet a thorough oral exam to ensure his or her teeth and gums are healthy.
- Complete blood count
- This test aids in the detection and diagnosis of infections, anemia, bleeding problems, and cancer. It also provides clues about the status of your pet’s immune system.
- Serum chemistry profile
- This is used in order to assess the function of the liver, kidneys, and pancreas, along with other organs. It is also used for early diagnosis of diseases, such as diabetes.
- Complete urinalysis
- A urine sample will be checked for evidence of infection and to further assess kidney function.
- Fecal analysis
- A fecal sample will be examined for evidence of parasites and protozoa.
- Systolic blood pressure
- A blood pressure measurement will be taken to determine if systemic hypertension is present.
Depending upon your pet’s health and whether he or she has an ongoing condition, we may recommend more frequent wellness exams and blood work.
- Senior Pet Counseling
- In addition to conducting pet health screenings, we will review your pet’s vaccination schedule to make sure that he or she is current.
Since your senior pet’s dietary needs will change over time, we will provide pet nutrition counseling as well. Senior pets require fewer calories because they are less active. A diet that is high in fiber and enriched with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and beta-carotene will go a long way toward enhancing your senior pet’s health and well-being. Keeping your pet at the proper weight will also lower his or her chances of developing diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and more.
Animal Hospital by the Sea rocks! Jean is a fabulous veterinarian, the environment is warm and relaxing and there is great communication between Jean and her staff. We are all so very happy to have found them!
—Jodi Starcevich, Matt Costello, Groovy Roux and Salinger
Dr. Dieden’s surgical technique allowed our dog a quick and trouble free spay recovery without the stress and discomfort of an Elizabethan collar (head cone). We are very grateful to Dr. Dieden and staff who assisted with Rena’s surgery.
—Bob and Jayme Holmberg
Meshuggeneh was the most relaxed cat during her visit to Dr.Jean that I think she would have stayed longer. Thank you both Holly and Dr. Jean for your time and help. Best find in Langley... a great vet!
Jean and staff Thank you so very much for the care given to our Lab, Lily We are so appreciative of your time, concern and love given to our pet. Lily is forever grateful and so are her humans, Nina and Chris We hope the next visit will be just the standard check up and not an emergency, again thank you for the excellent care. Animal Hospital By The Sea, you rock!
Dory a Golden on the island says thank you.
The staff and Jean are fabulous. We are so lucky to have them on the Island.
Thank you Dr Jean Dieden for taking such good care of my labrador, Kinsey. Kinsey had a raging hot spot. Thanks to Dr Dieden’s caring and effective treatment, Kinsey is much more comfortable and on the mend.
It doesn’t get any better than this animal hospital for care for your pet. Jean Dieden and her team of Holly and Stacy are top notch and they are genuinely caring. I also like the fact that this is a animal hospital and part of that terminology means they do their own blood work.
Dr. Jean held my hand throughout it all and, had it not been for her professional intuition about a prescription Lena was given during emergency treatment, my little girl would not be the happy, healthy kitty she is today. As for how my other cat Dexter feels about Dr. Jean, you can see for yourself around this website.