Wellness and Vaccination Programs

At Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital we feel that it is a privilege to share in the care of the pets you love. We believe prevention is the key to good health. Therefore, we focus on a wide range of preventative measures to help maintain your pet’s good health, the most important of which is a complete physical exam. Dogs and cats age far faster than people, so significant changes in your pet’s health can happen in a short time. Wellness programs allow us to diagnose diseases and conditions early, when they’re easier to treat or manage. Often, we can help prevent diseases entirely, just by ensuring that your pet has received appropriate vaccinations and preventives. We recommend that healthy adult dogs and cats visit us at least once a year. Puppies, kittens, senior pets, and pets with health issues or illnesses need more frequent checkups. We’ll work with you to create an individualized wellness program, including a vaccination and prevention protocol customized specifically to your pet.

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: Puppy WellnessPuppy Wellness

Congratulations on your new puppy!

Thank you for choosing us to help protect and care for your new addition to your family.

Our puppy wellness program is designed to help get your puppy started on the right path to a long and healthy life. The first few months are a critical period in your puppy’s development, and we can give you the support and tools necessary to help him or her grow into a well-mannered, healthy dog, including information and advice on nutrition, training, behavior, and socialization.

Schedule your puppy for his or her first exam as soon as possible. During this exam your puppy will be screened for any congenital or breed related abnormalities as well as receive any appropriate vaccines. Until your puppy has received a series of vaccines, he or she is susceptible to many serious but preventable diseases. We will make sure your new dog is protected against rabies, distemper, and parvovirus, among other diseases. Your puppy will also need to be tested and treated for parasites, which are extremely common in young dogs. Heartworm prevention, flea and tick prevention, microchipping and the benefits of spaying and neutering will be discussed as well.

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: Kitten WellnessKitten Wellness

Congratulations on your new kitten!

Thank you for choosing us to help protect and care for your new addition to your family.

Our kitten wellness program is designed to help get your kitten started on the right path to a long and healthy life. The first few months are a critical period in your kitten’s development, and we can give you the support and tools necessary to help him or her grow into a well-mannered, healthy cat, including information and advice on nutrition, litterbox training, and behavior.

Schedule your kitten for his or her first exam as soon as possible. During this exam you kitten will be screened for the presence of any congenital or acquired diseases including Feline Leukemia Virus and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus. Until your kitten has received a series of vaccines, he or she is susceptible to many serious but preventable diseases. We will make sure your new pet is protected against rabies and panleukopenia (distemper). Depending on your cat’s risk, we may also advise vaccinating him or her against other diseases, such as feline leukemia virus (FeLV). In addition, your kitten will need to be tested and treated for parasites, which are common in young cats. Flea prevention, microchipping and the benefits of spaying and neutering will be discussed as well.

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: Adult Pet WellnessAdult Pet Wellness

The most important thing you can do to prevent illness and maintain the health of your pet is to schedule regular annual exams so that the doctor can evaluate your pet.

Bringing your pet in for an annual diagnostic and wellness checkup can help reassure you that your dog or cat is healthy or help us detect hidden diseases or conditions early.

Early detection can improve the prognosis of many diseases, keep medical costs down, and help your pet live longer. Many dogs and cats are good at hiding signs that something is wrong, so subtle changes in their health or behavior might be easy to overlook. And, depending on the disease, some pets don’t show any symptoms.

Dogs and cats age far more rapidly than humans, so it is even more crucial for our companion animals to receive regular exams. In addition, the risks of arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, hormone disorders, and kidney and liver problems all increase with age.

Because you spend the most time with your pet, you are your pet’s expert, as well as his or her greatest advocate. Please let us know if you’ve noticed any physical or behavioral changes in your pet, as well as any other concerns you might have.

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: Senior Pet WellnessSenior Pet Wellness

As dogs and cats get older, they need more attention and special care.

Our senior wellness program can help your pet remain fit and healthy as he or she ages and help us catch any potential problems earlier, when they’re easier to treat or manage. Regular veterinary exams can actually help your pet live longer, too!

Diagnosing diseases and certain conditions early is important throughout a pet’s life, but it becomes even more critical when your dog or cat enters his or her senior years. The risks of arthritis, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, hormone disorders, and kidney and liver problems all increase with age. In addition, dogs and cats may not show any signs of even serious diseases until they are quite advanced.

We can treat many symptoms that are commonly attributed to age, including those associated with cognitive dysfunction syndrome (similar to Alzheimer’s in humans). We can also improve your pet’s quality of life in many ways: by identifying and preventing or reducing pain, recommending an appropriate nutrition and exercise plan, and suggesting environmental modifications to keep your pet comfortable.

We will tailor a senior wellness plan to your pet’s individual needs. If you have any questions, we would be happy to discuss our senior wellness program in more detail. Call us today to schedule your pet’s exam!

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: VaccinesVaccines

Recent studies of the use of vaccines have changed the way many veterinarians look at vaccines.

In the past it was thought that more vaccines were better.

We now know that while vaccines are very important in keeping your pet safe and healthy, there is also risk involved. Additionally, studies have shown that many vaccines last longer than originally thought, and this information has led to new ideas regarding the frequency of vaccinations.

At Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital we offer a wide range of vaccines to help protect your pet from potentially serious or life threatening disease. Yet, our doctors also strongly believe in the judicious use of vaccines. Because of this, they use part of the exam time to consider the unique characteristics of your pet, including its individual lifestyle, to create a tailored vaccine protocol!

In addition, our doctors can run a new test called a vaccine titer, which indicates whether your pet even needs to receive a vaccination. The test determines if your pet has enough antibodies remaining from previous vaccinations to fight off the disease if exposed. The most common vaccine titer tests are for parvovirus, distemper virus, and panleukopenia virus.

We understand the evolution of veterinary studies and our doctors use the newest and most up to date recommendations from the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners to make vaccine protocols that best fit the needs of our patients. Please feel free to discuss this topic with us in more detail during your pet’s next physical exam.

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: Microchip Pet IdentificationMicrochip Pet Identification

Today, approximately 20 million owned pets are euthanized in American shelters every year because their owners cannot be found.

In fact, the American Humane Association estimates that only 17% of lost dogs and 2% of lost cats are placed back with their original owners. These statistics are startling. Even more startling is the fact that a simple solution exists — microchipping. Microchipping is a very important part of keeping your pet safe.

Microchipping is a safe, permanent way to identify your pet in case he or she becomes lost. When a lost dog or cat without an ID tag is found, a veterinarian or veterinary technician can use a handheld microchip scanner to check for a chip. If the pet has one, it will transmit its ID number to the scanner. The veterinary hospital or shelter then calls the chip manufacturer, retrieves the pet owner’s contact information, and calls the owner.

The staff of Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital want to encourage you to microchip your pets and we want to make sure that you are reunited with your pets if they become lost, therefore we pay the cost of registration. In addition, our staff will complete the registration process with you before you leave the hospital. In this way we hope to do our part to keep your pet safe.

Please contact us to schedule an appointment to microchip your pet. Although we hope your pet never becomes lost, we want you to be prepared. We can also suggest a plan to have in place so if your pet does go missing, you’ll be able to act quickly.

Belmont Shore Veterinary Hospital: Pet Health ResourcesPet Health Resources

Has your pet been diagnosed with a condition that you are unfamiliar with? Are you interested in learning more about how a particular drug works? Would you like more information or advice on behavior, nutrition, or administering medications?

We are always here to discuss these topics and more, but sometimes you may want to investigate or explore on your own, which is why we provide an extensive collection of pet health information.

Considering the wide availability of information on the Internet, it can be difficult to differentiate between what’s trustworthy and what’s not. The Pet Health section of our website contains accurate, current, and reliable information on a wide variety of topics. Feel free to search through our articles, educational programs, tips, and videos, and contact us with any questions you might have.