Caring For Our Furry Friends Why Veterinary Care Is So Important
America loves pets! The APAA says there are as many as 80 million dogs and 96 million cats in the United States; more than 30% of homeowners have a cat, while almost 40% have a dog. Our pets quite often dictate our choices, from where to live to what to buy, and our behaviors. They are part of the family. We adopt over 2.5 million pets from shelters each year, according to the ASPCA. Caring for our precious canine and feline friends — and the myriad other pet options Americans choose — means accepting that at some time in their lives our pets will become ill or injured. From pet cancer to arthritis, coping with pet diagnoses can be very difficult.
A veterinary care center is always the first port of call when an animal is ill or injured. Older pets should visit the vet every six months, while younger (under 10 years) dogs and cats should see a vet at least yearly. Regular check-ups can result in early detection of pet cancer, for example. Almost 50% of deaths in older animals is due to some sort of pet cancer. Cats tend to have a lower incidence of cancer than dogs or humans, according to the National Canine Cancer Foundation, but feline cancers tend to be more aggressive.
Almost a quarter of all dogs will develop a tumor at some point in their lives, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. Common cancers in dogs include skin and abdominal cancers. The risk of breast cancer in dogs can be reduced by spaying the dog at six to 12 months of age. Treatment options vary, with some forms of cancer being more treatable than others.
Veterinary hospitals can provide testing and treatment services for a variety of ailments, including teeth inspection and dental cleaning, tumor removal (often the best option for cancer diagnoses), and even pet food suggestions. Keeping your pet healthy involves ensuring regular vet check-ups, monitoring your pet for symptoms, and ensuring a healthy diet and exercise.