RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) - Over the past few weeks, there's a good chance that you were checking off your child's back-to-school list.
From school supplies to doctors' appointments, but something you may not have checked off the yet is a vet appointment for your furry friend.
Staying up-to-date on your pets' vet appointments and vaccines is just as important as your own.
"A lot of times, we will pick up problems the owner is not aware of such as an ear infection or nutrition," said Meiners Animal Clinic Veterinarian Dr. Mary Buhman.
Yearly physical exams are the best thing you can do to keep your pet healthy.
Now, if your pet is seven years or older, visiting the vet twice a year is recommended.
"Age at a much faster rate than the younger pets. And then, of course, the size of your pet too. Large and giant breed dogs, unfortunately, age very rapidly so would need more frequent check-ups," said Buhman.
Buhman says that at times, the staff finds more issues in patients who don't visit the vet regularly.
"Seeing something in their pet as they age and attribute it to old age. But the pet is experiencing that the owners aren't aware of," said Buhman.
During these visits, it's also essential to check up on the vaccines your pet has gotten and still needs. This will protect them from diseases they may get from other animals, and will also protect your family.
"But there are also some diseases that we vaccinate against that are zoonotic diseases. These are a disease that pets can pass on to humans. So important protection for them as well," said Buhman.
Vet visits don't only keep your furry friend healthy, but you as well.
If you notice changes in your pet's behavior, the best thing to do is give a call to your vet.