New Year's Resolutions for Healthy & Happy Pets Melton Veterinary Hospital's Blog Lacey Bacchus Jan 04 2018 Louisiana & Arkansas pet owners - New Year's Resolutions to keep your pets healthy & happy! Schedule two vet appointments this year- Pets need regular veterinary care to live long, healthy & happy lives. The best time to bring your pet in is for a wellness exam. Seeing your pet when he or she is feeling good gives veterinarians a baseline to use in case of trouble. We will also update needed vaccinations and discuss early disease detection blood and lab tests. Schedule a dental cleaning - Besides bad breath, poor dental health can cause pain and lead to heart, liver & kidney disease. Learn more about pet dentistry... Don’t skip on exercise - Regular exercise maintains your pet's healthy weight, builds strength and endurance. Exercise reduces behavior & medical problems associated with inactivity. Do not let winter keep you from walking your dog - most dogs will retrieve balls or toys for hours! Encourage cats to be active with toys or laser pointers. Consider training – Beyond learning sit, stay & come here, effective obedience training can help your pet become a successful member of your family. Provide parasite prevention - Heartworms, a potentially life-threatening disease, is prevalent in Bastrop, Louisiana because of mosquitoes and live in the heart, blood vessels and lungs of an infected pet. While treatment is available, heartworm prevention is safer, more cost effective & without side effects. All pets - even indoor pets - need to be on year-round heartworm prevention. We have safe, effective products for heartworm prevention along with prevention from fleas & ticks. Ticks can transmit Lyme disease. Learn more about parasite prevention... Help your pet be reunited if lost - Microchipping is a permanent form of pet ID. Vet hospitals and animal shelters scan a lost pet and obtain the owner's contact information if implanted with a microchip. Make sure the info is up to date if you moved or changed phone numbers. Ensure ID tags are current and securely fastened onto your pet at all times. Be mindful of what they eat - We can talk about nutritional counseling if they need to gain or lose a few pounds or have health conditions. Certain "people foods" are toxic to pets - chocolate, avocado, grapes/raisins, onions, garlic, macadamia nuts and alcohol and any foods containing xylitol (artificial sweetner often found in peanut butter and desserts). Log into your Pet Portal and visit our online pet pharmacy - 24/7 access to your pet's medical history, retrieve pet ID cards with vaccine information, educational tools, request appointments and set up medication reminders! Shop our online pet pharmacy & store 24/ for pet food, medicine & supplies to be delivered right to your door! Keep them looking & feeling fresh and clean - Regular bathing & grooming maintains a healthy coat, skin and nails! Talk to us about pet laser therapy - Older pets or those with arthritis or joint, disc and skin conditions can benefit from pet laser therapy.