At South Branch Vet, we recommend a wellness examination every six to twelve months depending on the age, health, and lifestyle of your pet. At each exam we will discuss nutrition, activity, preventative care routines, vaccinations and perform a thorough examination. Based on the exam findings and the needs of the individual patient, we will discuss any diagnostic tests that may be indicated. Recommended vaccinations will depend on your pet’s lifestyle and is tailored to every individual patient. You can learn more about vaccinations here.

Parasite Prevention

Fleas. Ticks. Roundworm, heartworm and tapeworm. Our animals are a walking buffet to them, and once they’re on your dog or cat, it’s a short ride on the pet express to your home and family. Many of these parasites and the diseases they carry are zoonotic—meaning they can be transmitted to humans, too. The best form of protection for your pet is prevention.

Flea, Tick & Heartworm

Flea, tick and heartworm prevention isn’t just a summer thing—year-round protection from these pests could be a life saver for your pet.

Because flea, tick, and mosquito numbers are tied to heat and humidity, an early spring or a warm, wet fall can make these insects active earlier and later in any season. There’s really no way to “time” the preventive medications so that your pet is safe, so the best way to avoid disease is by keeping your pet on parasite prevention throughout the year.

We carry many different flea, tick and heartworm preventives and can help you determine which one is best for your pet. For more information, call us at 908-735-9998.

Intestinal Parasites

It’s important to understand the prevalence and dangers of intestinal parasites. These worms can be spread to both dogs and cats when they come into contact with previously contaminated animals and substances, such as fleas or feces. Keep an eye out for these common parasites:

  • Roundworms – The most common of intestinal parasitic worms transmitted through feces, roundworms can cause pneumonia and intestinal obstruction.
  • Hookworms – Often found in dirt where infected animals have been, hookworms infest the small intestine, resulting in a dull coat, loss of appetite and pale skin.
  • Whipworms – Long-lasting and often asymptomatic, these worms can cause significant damage to the gut. Signs of whipworm infection include dehydration, anemia and weight loss.
  • Tapeworms – Caused by ingesting infected animals and other parasites such as fleas, tapeworms will make a home in their new host’s intestine causing lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea and discomfort.

Since many of these parasites are difficult to detect, the CDC recommends deworming four times per year coupled with year-round prevention. In order to be prescribed a preventative, your pet will first need a fecal test to check for existing parasites. If you are interested in our intestinal parasite preventatives, or if you think your pet may be experiencing symptoms of infection, please give us a call at 908-735-9998.

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