One of the biggest challenges of pet parenting is determining if your pet is unwell. Animals naturally try to disguise any pain and potential illness, a characteristic that stems from a time before they were domesticated and instead had to fight for survival in the wild – and where any sign of weakness could spell disaster if predators were lurking.
While you could wait for your adorable animal to eventually show you some indicators through her behaviors and activities, we firmly believe that preventing illness or catching it in the early stages is crucial. Failing to identify problems early could lead to irreversible damage to your pet’s health, and extensive and expensive treatments.
Fortunately, there is something else you can do to monitor your pet’s overall health and wellbeing and prevent minor problems from turning into something serious – schedule her for early detection blood panel testing with your vet in Atlanta, GA.
What is early detection blood panel testing?
Most veterinarians recommend early detection blood panel testing as part of a series or package of tests alongside your pet’s annual, routine examinations. This enables our veterinary team at Inman Park Animal Hospital to keep a close track of your pet’s health and wellbeing, and as the name of the test suggest, detect any potentially harmful changes early on before they can become much serious and have lasting consequences for your pet.
Early detection blood panel testing involves two types of blood test. These are:
A complete blood count (CBC). This blood test looks at the quantities and quality of the red and white blood cells present in your pet’s body, as well as her platelet count. The information derived from a CBC test can tell our veterinarian a great deal of information about the health of your pet, including whether or not she in anemic, whether her blood can clot if necessary, and if her immune system is functioning properly or currently battling an infection or illness.
Blood chemistry test. This measures the levels of various substances in the blood such as electrolytes, proteins, hormones, vitamins and minerals. Again, the results of this test can be helpful in early identification of many diseases that could affect your pet, from diabetes and thyroid problems to kidney disease, liver problems and even some cancers.
Alongside the CBC and blood chemistry test, most early detection panels also include a urinalysis. This is laboratory testing of your pet’s urine which will be able to tell our veterinarian detailed information about kidney function and whether there are issues such as urinary tract infections, diabetes or kidney/bladder stones.
Once pets reach eight years of age or older, they may also have their thyroid checked as part of their early detection screening. This is because as your pet’s age increases, so too does the likelihood of her developing thyroid problems.
Understanding the results from your pet’s early detection blood panel testing
In most cases, you will only be alerted to the results of your pet’s early detection testing if there is one or more of the readings suggests that there may be a problem developing and further investigation is required. In these instances, our Inman Park Animal Hospital veterinarian in Atlanta will call you or invite you in to discuss the abnormal result and recommend what the next course of action should be. If you are unclear about anything, don’t hesitate to ask our vets in Atlanta to explain it again or more clearly.
If there is nothing to be concerned about, your pet’s results will be filed and used for comparison at the next early detection blood panel testing.
If your pet has not had early detection blood panel testing before, contact us and speak to our animal hospital in Atlanta, GA to schedule an appointment for Early Detection Testing.