Puppy & Kitten Care: Welcoming a New Member to Your Family

Puppy & Kitten Care From The Staff at Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital

When you introduce a new puppy or kitten into your home, you’re starting a life-changing adventure that’s sure to bring lots of happiness and joy. During these early weeks and months, your new furry friend will be exploring everything in his or her environment.

It’s an exciting time, but it’s also a period when your pet will need extra guidance and protection. That’s where the veterinarians and staff of Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital can help. Together, we will ensure that your puppy or kitten gets started off on the right paw!

Introductory Pet Wellness Exam

It’s important to schedule a wellness exam as soon as possible after your puppy or kitten comes to live with you. You’ll want to bring any prior veterinary records and pet health information to the appointment, along with a stool sample. It’s also a good idea to write a list of questions in advance. This way you can note items as you think of them, and they won’t be forgotten during the excitement of the visit.

During this appointment, our veterinarians will conduct a comprehensive nose-to-tail exam. We will begin by checking your puppy or kitten’s eyes, ears, hair, skin, and dentation to be sure his or her teeth are properly aligned. We will listen to his or her heart and lungs, making sure that there are no respiratory infections present. In addition, we will screen for musculoskeletal problems and potential congenital defects.

Our veterinarians will also take this opportunity to provide breed-specific counseling about potential health risks and preventive care that will help to keep your puppy or kitten healthy. This will include pet nutrition counseling, as each pet has his or her own needs based on breed, size, and activity level.

Parasites

Parasite prevention is essential—not only for the sake of your pet, but also for your family’s safety as well. Many parasites are zoonotic, meaning they can be transmitted to humans.

Because most puppies and kittens are born with intestinal parasites, we will start your new pet on a comprehensive deworming program during the initial exam. You will also be given additional medication, in the form of an appetizing liquid, to continue the process at home over the next several weeks.

As your puppy or kitten matures, our veterinarians will advise you regarding the best ways to prevent fleas, ticks, heartworms, and more.

Pet Vaccinations

Puppies and kittens need vaccinations to protect them from infectious diseases. At Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital, we are very careful to ensure that we tailor our vaccination protocols to the specific needs of our pet patients, based upon their lifestyles and risk factors.

We follow the vaccination guidelines of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Animal Hospital Association, and the American Association of Feline Practitioners. In addition, our veterinarians stay informed about the latest research and developments, adjusting our treatments as needed to ensure the highest levels of safety and protection for your pet.

To learn more about the which vaccines we recommend for your puppy or kitten, please visit our pet vaccination section.

New Pet Counseling

We are always happy to assist families with new pets. From providing house training and teething advice to showing you how to trim your pet’s nails, our veterinarians and staff are here for you. We will also teach you how to acclimate your pet to having his or her teeth brushed, ears cleaned, and other pet care necessities. The number one reason why pets end up in shelters is due to behavioral problems, so getting off to a good start is essential. We are available to help in any way we can!

Microchips

There is nothing more heartbreaking than losing a beloved family member. Thanks to microchips, we have been able to successfully reunite lost pets with their families on numerous occasions. Please contact us to learn more about this simple procedure or to schedule an appointment today.

Spay or Neuter Surgery

We recommend that pets be spayed or neutered between 6–8 months of age. When you bring your pet to our hospital, rest assured that he or she will receive the best possible veterinary care.

Some spay or neuter facilities promise lower prices, but there’s a reason for that. In many cases, pre- and post-operative pain medication and appointment costs are added in after the fact—if pain medication is provided at all.

At Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital, nothing is more important to us than ensuring your pet is safe, comfortable, and secure. We have strict safety protocols in place, and we are very proactive when it comes to pain management.

We want your pet to have a successful surgery and a positive overall experience. Not only because it’s the right thing to do, but also because this way he or she won’t be afraid to receive veterinary care in the future.