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Screening Procedures for Senior Dogs

Just as certain health screenings become necessary for people as they age, your veterinarian may wish to run specific tests to ensure your dog is healthy so as to catch problems early.

These procedures are common:

  • Physical examination. A physical exam includes checking your dog's general appearance, temperature, body weight, heart, lungs, ears, eyes, teeth, thyroid glands, and skin.
  • Complete blood count. This test helps in the diagnosis of cancer, infection, anemia, and bleeding problems, and it provides insight into the status of your dog's immune system.
  • Serum chemistry profile. This test is used for assessing the function of the liver, kidneys, pancreas, and other organs.
  • Complete urinalysis. A urine sample will be checked for evidence of infection and to assess kidney function.
  • Fecal analysis. A fecal sample will be checked for evidence of parasites, unusual bacteria and protozoa, and red and white blood cells.
  • Other tests. Additional testing will be recommended as needed. Radiography, echocardiography, abdominal ultrasonography, thyroid and adrenal gland testing, blood pressure measurement, as well as liver, pancreas, and small intestine function tests may be considered necessary.