The first step in new puppy and kitten care is to schedule a thorough wellness examination at our animal hospital. This allows our Hamilton veterinarian to run blood and fecal laboratory tests to look for any signs of a lurking disease or parasitic infestation that might require immediate treatment. It’s also a good time to begin preventative medications that can keep such infestations at bay for life. Pet vaccinations are another critical step in safeguarding your puppy or kitten against devastating diseases. We always inoculate against rabies when we administer pet vaccinations. Other core pet vaccinations include protection against canine hepatitis, parvo and distemper (for puppies), and protection against feline calicivirus, feline herpesvirus and panleukopenia (for kittens). We then advise owners on a schedule for recurring booster shots to maintain the proper degree of immunization for the rest of the pet’s life.
Our animal hospital recommends that you spay or neuter your puppy or kitten. These sterilization procedures help protect against certain types of cancers as well as preventing unanticipated pregnancies. They also prevent the behavioral disturbances that accompany heat cycles, which in turn could keep your pet from getting into dangerous situations.
Dental care is another important issue in puppy and kitten care. These animals have baby teeth and permanent teeth just as we do, and the eventual development and alignment of the permanent teeth is influenced by the behavior of the baby teeth. Sometimes baby teeth are not properly pushed out and replaced; the retained baby teeth can vie for position in the mouth alongside growing permanent teeth, interfering with healthy dental development. Our animal hospital can check to make sure that the baby teeth are growing in straight and giving way to permanent teeth in a healthy manner, while also making sure that the oral cavity and gums are healthy. Regular dental checkups and cleanings every year will help maintain dental health. Pet owners should also learn how to brush their pet’s teeth and examine the mouth for signs of possible tooth or gum problems.
Puppies and kittens have different dietary needs than their adult forms will eventually require. Their high metabolism during this rapid growth phase calls for large amounts of protein, and they may require different portion sizes as well. We can advise pet owners on what kind of puppy or kitten food to purchase and how much to give their new pet. Careful dietary and nutritional practices help to ensure that a puppy or kitten gets the right mix of essential nutrients without risking obesity. Some of the foods currently available even help reduce the buildup of dental plaque, a cause of tooth and gum infections
Schedule a Wellness Checkup at Beattie Animal Hospital
We invite Hamilton pet owners to bring their new puppy or kitten to our office for pet vaccinations and other initial wellness care. We want to help your new pet grow into a healthy adult.