Preventative care is essential to maintaining your pet’s good health for as long as possible. At Animal Ark Animal Hospital, we constantly emphasize the importance of routine preventative exams, blood work, cat and dog vaccinations, and balanced nutrition because it’s the best way to keep illness at bay and prolong your companion’s life. Our veterinarians in Franklin, TN are extremely thorough during wellness appointments, examining your pet from nose to tail and running comprehensive blood and parasite screens to check for issues. We also provide vaccines tailored specifically to your pet’s health needs and lifestyle.
Contact us today to schedule your pet’s preventative exam and vaccinations.
Why Preventative Pet Exams are Important
The goal of annual/bi-annual preventative pet exams is to make sure your pet is staying healthy and catch any subtle, underlying signs of potential illness as soon as possible. The sooner we detect a problem, the sooner we can treat it and prevent harmful symptoms and lasting effects. At Animal Ark Animal Hospital, we recommend seeing otherwise healthy adult pets at least once a year for their exam. Senior dogs and cats, aged 7 and up, and large dog breeds aged 5 and up should see us at least twice a year (or bi-annually) for an exam and bloodwork.
During the pet exam, we:
- Check your pet’s heart, lungs, body weight, and temperature
- Thoroughly examine their skin, coat, limbs, abdomen, eyes, ears, and mouth and make note of anything abnormal
- Discuss treatment options for any issues we find
- Perform comprehensive, age-appropriate blood work (for seniors, we recommend screening for diabetes and/or kidney disease and urinalysis for senior cats)
- Perform heartworm testing
- Provide tailored vaccinations to your pet
- Recommend year-round parasite prevention
- Offer knowledgeable nutrition recommendations (no raw diets!)
- If needed, we can provide bathing for dogs (established clients only)
Our Vaccines for Dogs
For dogs, we recommend the following core (essential) vaccines:
- Rabies (1 and 3-year)
- Distemper/Parvo/Hepatitis/Parainfluenza (1 and 3-year)
Our lifestyle-based (non-core) vaccines for dogs include:
- Influenza (as seasonally/regionally necessary)
Our Vaccine Timeline for Puppies
While not set in stone, this is the vaccine timeline we highly recommend for puppies (includes core and non-core vaccines):
- DHPP Booster: Given at 6, 9, and 12 weeks old
- Parvo: Given at 16 and 20 weeks old
- Kennel Cough (Bordetella): Given at 6 weeks old
- Rabies: Given at last visit, or around 20 weeks old
Note: We advocate the 3-year DHPP and Rabies product vaccines every 3 years after the puppy series, and often stop at year 7.
Our Vaccines for Cats
We offer the PureVax vaccines for cats, which have a lower potential for side effects. Our core vaccines for cats include:
- Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis/Calicivirus/Panleukopenia (FVRCP)
There is one non-core vaccine for cats:
- Feline Leukemia
Our Vaccine Timeline for Kittens
For kittens, we recommend the following vaccination timeline for optimal protection:
- FVRCP: Given at 6, 9, 12, and 16 weeks old
- Feline Leukemia: Given at 9 and 12 weeks old
- Rabies: Given at 16 weeks old
What About Vaccine Titers?
Vaccine titers can play a role in determining your pet’s level of immunity against certain illnesses by measuring antibodies, but they cannot improve immunity. We can offer a titer test if requested, but we still advocate for vaccinations, as titers can be misleading regarding protective immunity.