Annual Health Screens

As part of your pet's annual vaccination program, we will give your pet a thorough physical examination. This procedure allows us to determine the overall physical health of your pet. It also allows us to examine your pet closely for problems that may be considered breed specific. This simply means that certain breeds of dogs and cats are pre-disposed to certain problems.

For example, if you own a cocker spaniel, you have no doubt at some time dealt with an ear problem. Our physical examination will help alert you to potential problems which may occur. The physical exam, however, does not allow us to determine the overall health of the internal organs. Only a blood screen will do that. This short procedure will detect any liver and kidney problems as well as check for anemia, diabetes, and infections. We recommend this screening for all pets two to seven years of age. If your pet is seven years or older, ask about our senior care program. As in all health evaluations, early detection is the key as it allows for more and better treatment options. If you have any questions, please feel free to call.

Senior Care Program

Today, people live longer, healthier lives than they typically did years ago. In large part that's due to a better understanding of the importance of factors that can influence aging, such as preventative health care and nutrition. Similarly, the dogs and cats that make up such an important part of our lives are also living longer, healthier lives.

We are observing that a growing number of our patients are canine and feline "senior citizens." Part of the reason that pets are able to live longer now than a few years ago, is the tremendous advances that have occurred in veterinary medicine. A greater knowledge of diseases, diagnostic procedures, and treatments are available to us today. Perhaps the greatest reason why animals live longer, better lives, is the increased knowledge that the pet owners have about the importance of preventive health care measures---immunization, parasite control, spaying and neutering, and early disease detection, to name a few.

As dogs and cats age, they, like people, have a greater risk for developing certain diseases and conditions. For example, we know that the incidence of problems, such as heart disease, kidney disease, malignant and benign tumors, arthritis, loss of vision, and oral/dental disease increases with advancing age. However, when such conditions are diagnosed in their early stages, treatment to cure such disorders or delay their progress can be given in most cases.

For that reason, we recommend that all of our dog and cat patients that are 7 years of age or older, have an annual geriatric evaluation. This evaluation includes a thorough and complete physical examination, a complete blood count, blood chemistry profile, urinalysis, and radiographs. When the evaluation is complete and all the test results have been received, we will discuss the findings with you, and advise you of any needed treatment or change in diet.

Just as when people have an annual physical, in most cases the results are normal. Even then, it's good to know that everything is "all right" and the evaluation provides valuable "baseline data" on which to compare future results. If a condition is revealed, you know it has been discovered as early as possible and treatment can be started. Importantly, we can work with you to insure that your pet lives a long, healthy, and happy life. It's the least we can do in return for all the love that our pets give us.

If you have any questions about our senior care evaluation for your pet for now or in the future---please call us anytime during normal practice hours. We look forward to talking with you.

Canine Geriatric Program

As dogs age, we know that they, like people, have a greater risk for developing certain diseases and conditions. For example, we know that the incidence of problems such as heart disease, kidney disease, arthritis, and oral/dental disease increases with advancing age. However, when such diseases are diagnosed in their early stages, treatment to cure such disorders or delay their progress can be given in most cases. For that reason, we recommend that all of our canine patients that are seven years of age or older have an annual geriatric evaluation. This evaluation includes a complete and thorough physical exam, a complete blood count, blood chemistry profile, urinalysis and thyroid test. As in all health evaluations, early detection is the key as it allows for more and better treatment options.

Feline Geriatric Program

Older cats can develop a myriad of medical problems, but there are three common problems that we see in geriatric patients: diabetes, kidney disease, and hyperthyroidism. All three diseases affect the other systems over time and are, if left untreated at an early stage, fatal. If these chronic disease processes are detected soon after they start, they may be very treatable and controllable.

Generally, we recommend that cats seven years and older have blood drawn and checked annually. Diagnostic tests include blood chemistries, a complete blood count, urinalysis, and thyroid test. It is in this way we can detect the problem before it becomes a major medical problem. As in all health evaluations, early detection is the key as it allows for more and better treatment options.

We have tried to make our senior care program as affordable as possible, so that your pets' may benefit from the same tests and evaluations that we use on our own aging pets. We know how difficult it is to say goodbye to an old friend, therefore we hope to keep you and your pet together as many years as possible.

Pet Dental Program

A major part of your pet's health is oral and dental hygiene. If your pet is 3 years or older, he already has tartar and plaque build-up on his teeth and probably needs a dental cleaning. Most older pets will have advanced tartar build-up and some degree of gum disease. The problem begins when plaque and tartar are allowed to build up on your pet's teeth. Plaque harbors the bacteria, which can infect gum tissue and the root system. This often results in healthy teeth having to be extracted because the root structure has been compromised. A more serious consequence of dental disease occurs when the infection spreads via the bloodstream to other vital organs such as the lungs, heart, and brain.

The first step in improving your pets oral health is a complete dental exam. If a dental cleaning is recommended for your pet, a doctor will discuss the procedure with you. Since we have yet to figure out how to get most pets to sit in a dental chair with their mouth open, the procedure will be done under anesthesia. Preliminary blood work prior to the dental is recommended to rule out any underlying health conditions that might compromise the safety of anesthesia. Older pets should have a more comprehensive blood profile run.

Dental procedures are recommended annually in most cases. Ask us about home dental care and procedures you can perform at home to ensure your pet's oral health.

We also offer the following services:

  • Anesthesia
  • Anti-Aging Programs
  • Asthma & Allergy Clearance
  • Bathing
  • Boarding
  • Cardiology
  • Dentistry
  • Dermatology
  • Education/Literature
  • Emergency Care
  • Flea Control
  • Geriatrics
  • Immunizations
  • Internal Medicine
  • In-House Laboratory
  • Nutritional Counseling
  • Ophthalmology
  • Parasitic Control
  • Prescriptions
  • Preventative Health Programs
  • Radiology
  • Skin Care
  • Spay/Neuter
  • Surgery
  • Vaccinations

Ivy Hill Animal Hospital

10030 Medlock Bridge Road

Johns Creek, GA 30097

770-418-1122

Appointments Preferred

Hospital Hours

Monday through Friday 7:30 AM to 6:00 PM

Saturday 8:00 AM to 12:00 Noon