Avian & Exotic Pet Exams
Cats and dogs are popular pets, but they are not the only pets we see here at Lakeside Veterinary Center in Laurel. Birds and certain exotic species can make wonderful companions, too, and there are many health factors you need to consider when caring for them. Whether your pet walks, flies, hops, or slithers, they still need routine care from their veterinarian. All pets should undergo annual physical examinations and preventive checkups. Early detection increases the chances of preventing or delaying the onset and progression of disease in your pet.
We are proud to be one of the few animal hospitals in the area that offers full-service veterinary care for avians and exotics. These animals have very specific requirements when it comes to nutrition, housing, and behavior. Therefore, the annual exam visit is the perfect time for your veterinarian, who is specially trained in avian and exotic pet care, to evaluate your pet’s specific needs.
What’s Included in the Wellness Exam
We can provide a complete checkup and offer valuable information specific to your pet. Issues such as changes in the feathers or skin, body weight, urine, respiratory functions and eye clarity can easily be detected and treated. Your veterinarian can also teach you about:
- Proper diet
- Cage/enclosure assembly
- Nutritional supplementation
- Environmental requirements such as temperature and lighting
- Aging changes
- Species-specific behaviors
- Enrichment and foraging
Vaccinating Your Ferret
We typically recommend that ferrets be vaccinated; depending on their lifestyle, they may need both the rabies and distemper vaccines. Rabies is required, just as it is for dogs and cats, but ferrets can also be vulnerable to the canine distemper virus, which is 100% fatal if they become infected. Only after we’ve examined your ferret and quizzed you about their lifestyle will we decide if they should be vaccinated against canine distemper.
Senior Pet Care
It varies according to species and sometimes breed when exotic pets become seniors. Like us, our pets become more susceptible to illness and injury as they grow older, and need more frequent care from their veterinarian to stay healthy. We recommend bringing in your senior avian or exotic pet annually for blood and fecal tests. As with any other animal, they conceal their illnesses well.
Senior pets can develop conditions such as diabetes, congestive heart failure, kidney failure and arthritis. Ask your veterinarian any questions you might have about caring for your pet in their advanced years and accommodating changes in activity and mobility. If your pet is experiencing aches and pains due to inflamed joints, we can offer medication, supplements, or even laser therapy to increase their comfort. Our goal is to help your pet age gracefully and comfortably.
Animals, like us, are living souls. They are not things. They are not objects. Neither are they human. Yet they mourn. They love. They dance. They suffer. They know the peaks and chasms of being.