How often should I take my dog to the vet?

Your dog is your most loyal friend. It also occupies an important place in your life. But how often do you have to go to the vet with your faithful companion? Should you only go when your dog is sick? In this article, we will explain when it is best to take your dog to the vet.

Your dog is a part of your life. But it also needs to have a check up with the vet every now and then. How often you should visit the vet with your dog depends on the stage of life your dog is in. Do you have a puppy? Then the animal has to visit the vet more often than an adult dog. But should you only go to the vet if your dog is sick? No, this is not the case. A vet visit can also be scheduled to have your dog's health checked routinely. Or you can also visit with your four-legged friend for the annual vaccination. Thanks to regular check-ups, diseases can be detected and treated in good time. So, when should you schedule a vet visit?

Vet visit with your puppy

Have you bought yourself a puppy? Then, it is recommended to go to your vet shortly after the purchase. The doctor can then do an initial health check and give all the necessary vaccinations to the puppy. Your dog will also be dewormed and checked for fleas at the visit.

However, it is important that you let your puppy get used to his new environment before planning a vet visit. This is necessary to limit the amount of stress in your puppy. Most puppies go to the vet for the first time when they are 6 to 8 weeks old. During this visit, it is also important for your puppy to feel comfortable. Your four-legged friend will have to come in for a number of checkups, so it is important that it trusts the vet. But checking your dog’s health is not the only goal of the visit. The vet can also answer your questions about the puppy’s upbringing and care.

Vet visits with an adult dog

Do you have an adult dog? Is he active? Is he eating well? Does he have a good stool? Have you answered "yes" to all these questions? Then you may think that you have a healthy dog but it is still necessary to come in for an annual checkup. Your vet will conduct all the necessary tests and ensure that your canine friend is healthy.

Vet visits with an older dog (senior)

As soon as your dog reaches the age of 8 years, it will be a senior. At that age, your dog may suffer more from ailments. After 8 years, it is recommended to visit the vet at least twice a year for a senior dog check-up. That way you can detect issues quickly and help keep your dog healthy for as long as possible.

There are also a number of diseases that are most common in dogs. These are:

  • Obesity
  • Tartar
  • Ear infections
  • Mammary gland tumors (in females)
  • Cataract or gray cataract

If you experience any of these things in your dog, it is recommended to visit your vet right away.

Other reasons for a vet visit

There are other reasons which may require an unplanned visit to the vet:

  • Neutering and spaying help prevent unwanted pregnancies. But you can also adjust your dog's behavior through this. After neutering, male dogs show less aggressive behavior. Or it can prevent medical problems. For example, females are more likely to get an infection of the uterus if they are not sterilized. Both spaying and neutering are performed when your dog is 6 to 14 months old.
  • Dentistry: Dogs can suffer from bad breath. This could be due to leftover food, plaque, bacteria and tartar. If this is not removed, there is a good chance that the gums will also be affected. Good oral hygiene is therefore very important for your four-legged friend.
  • Vaccinations are a routine job for your vet. If you have a puppy, it will need a few vaccinations in a short period of time. In an adult dog, this is more likely to happen annually.
  • Parasites can harm your dog's health. This can range from internal parasites, such as worms to external parasites, such as ticks.
  • Euthanasia is a difficult decision to make. It may be necessary if your dog has become too old. But another reason for having your dog euthanized is because it has a serious illness. Your vet can help assist you during this difficult period and help you make all the decisions.