Exotics & Reptiles: Pet Health Care for Scales and Cotton Tails
At Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital, we are dedicated to pets of all shapes and sizes. We care for rabbits, ferrets, and rodents & including gerbils, hamsters, rats, mice, and guinea pigs. We also provide veterinary care for reptiles, such as snakes, iguanas, and lizards.
Our veterinarians understand that each species has its own specific needs and requirements in order to maintain good pet health, and we’re happy to help you fulfill them.
Pet Wellness Exams
Since many smaller mammals have a shorter lifespan, we recommend that they receive semi-annual pet wellness exams. When you bring your small mammal in to see us, it’s a good idea to use a carrier that can be easily covered. This will help him or her to feel safe and remain calm.
For reptiles, we recommend an annual wellness exam. You’ll want to be sure that your reptile is kept warm while he or she is being transported to and from the appointment.
Once your pet is in the exam room, our veterinarians will conduct a thorough physical that’s very similar to the one we perform for cats and dogs. Some of the areas we will focus on include:
- Checking for eye and skin diseases
- Monitoring the bones and joints for any changes
- Listening to the heart and lungs
Our veterinarians will also be happy to answer any questions you may have about appropriate care for your small mammal or reptile. This could range from his or her ideal diet—including pet nutritional supplements—to your pet’s unique housing, temperature, and humidity requirements.
Ferrets are required by law to receive the rabies vaccine. We also recommend that ferret patients that are at risk receive a distemper vaccination.
Potential Diseases and Disorders
Did you know that ferrets and rabbits could develop heart disease much like dogs and cats? Or that reptiles can suffer from skin infections, metabolic diseases such as low calcium, or crippling arthritis?
In order to protect pets from these and other health problems, our veterinarians recommend having regular blood work done for ferrets, rabbits, and some of the larger reptiles. Disorders such as low glucose or kidney disease can also be detected early and managed through this type of screening.
Pet Dental Care
Monitoring your pet’s teeth is essential, especially for rabbits and rodents. Overgrown teeth can be deadly to them, so it’s important to address any changes as early as possible.
Ferrets often experience a buildup of tartar and gingivitis, so they require regular dental care as well.
Our veterinarians and staff have extensive pet dental experience, and will be happy to provide your pet with the oral care he or she needs.