why should I take my pet to the vet every six months?

Published 11/04 2013 08:38AM

Updated 11/07 2013 10:47AM

It's time to Ask an Expert! Today's expert is Dr. Tom Hancock from Hancock Veterinary Services and the question is: Why should I take my pet to the vet every six months?

"That's a question we get sometimes and it's really important to remember that our pets are aging about seven times faster than we are. So if you're looking at it that way, it's really like you're taking him to the vet every three and a half years," Dr. Hancock says. "What that does is it allows us to catch things earlier. We need to be able to look them over and look in their ears and look in their eyes and make sure that nothing's really changed, and a year is really too long to wait between visits. I really can't tell you how many times you know, I've looked at a pet and I've found a lymph node that was enlarged that the owner wasn't really aware of, and I can remember one case in particular where a dog came in on a six month visit, we found a tumor in a lymph node. We were able to send him to a referral clinic and get that taken care of and probably saved that particular dog's life. And the owner was really really happy that she'd brought her dog in when she did. So, that six month visit can kind of help us do some things at a time different than when they're just getting their yearly vaccinations. So, it's really tough on the pet when you have to have everything done on one visit, so if you can kind of break those things up, it's better medicine and it kind of reduces the amount of stress that they have to go through. It's also a bit easier to budget if you can kind of spread things out over six months as opposed to trying to do it all in one yearly visit.

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