Annual veterinary fecal exams are the best way you can keep your cat or dog and family members protected from intestinal parasites. Today, our Orange vets share how a fecal exam once a year for your pet can help your veterinarian detect intestinal parasites before more severe conditions develop.
Fecal exams are completed at your primary care vet's office and are a microscopic examination of your pet's feces. These yearly exams help your vet find and treat any infections that might be compromising the health of your pet and even the health of everyone in your household.
What Fecal Exams Look For
When conducting a fecal exam your veterinarian will check for any signs of parasites such as hookworms and roundworms. These parasites could make your pets uncomfortable and irritable, as well as lead to many more serious conditions. A handful of parasites can even be transmitted to humans.
Intestinal parasites reside in the gastrointestinal tract of your pet, hiding out of view. This makes fecal exams the best way to find their presence.
Preparing for Your Pet's Fecal Exam
Collect a fresh sample of your pet's stool and bring it to your vet's office the same day, preferably within 4 to 6 hours to get the most accurate results.
It's very important not to let the stool sample dehydrate or dry out because many of the potential parasites will be killed, which could mask their presence.
How Often Your Pet Needs a Fecal Exam
You should have your pet tested for internal parasites at least once a year. Puppies and animals that have gastrointestinal problems might need to have fecal exams more frequently. Ask your vet how often you should bring your pet's stool sample in for a fecal exam.