Health Care for Puppies & Kittens: Getting Off to a Good Start
Parents would never care for the health of their baby without help from a pediatrician, so it only makes sense to enlist a veterinarian to do the same for your puppy or kitten. At the Animal Hospital of Rocky Hill, we are qualified veterinary professionals, trained and ready to handle the needs of your newborn pet.
Their First Year
“Puppy” and “kitten” are somewhat ambiguous terms, due to the fact that dogs and cats transition to adulthood individually, not as species or breeds. Generally speaking, your pet will be considered a puppy or kitten for the first year of his or her life. Get ready—because it is a time of rapid growth and many changes!
Between 6 and 8 weeks of age, your puppy or kitten should receive his or her first checkup. Since their bodies and systems are evolving, nutrition is key to their growth. We will council you on the proper diet and treats for your specific breed, as well as the amount of exercise required to keep them happy and healthy.
An identification microchip can be implanted at any time after your puppy or kitten’s first few weeks, so his or her initial checkup is a great time to discuss the procedure, as well as its benefits.
Disease and parasite prevention is also important for your puppy or kitten. This is why we regularly test and monitor them for various diseases and intestinal parasites. We also recommend they be placed on a year-round flea and tick prevention program.
The subject of vaccinations is one that will come up many times within their first year. We stick to a fairly standardized schedule of “core vaccinations” aimed at preventing some potentially deadly diseases. Expect your pet to receive several series of vaccinations within their first few months, and then boosters ever year after.
At 5 months of age, your pet is eligible to be either spayed or neutered. Unless you plan on breeding your pet, we highly recommend this procedure. It controls many undesired behaviors, as well as lengthens life expectancy.
For more information about our puppy and kitten care, or to make your pet’s first appointment, we invite you to contact us today.