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Routine Lab Testing

Fecal Examinations - Canines and Felines

This diagnostic test is used to identify any of several intestinal parasite species.  The common parasites of dogs and cats include a variety of worms (roundworms, hookworms, whipworms) and one-celled protozoa (coccidia, giardia, other).  In this test, we take a sample of fresh stool, dissolve it in a special heavy salt solution, then look under the microscope for worm eggs and/ cellular protozoa that float to the surface of the liquid.  

 

Puppies and kittens acquire these parasites from their mothers either in the womb,

through the milk, or from direct contact.  Several of these species migrate through

the juveniles bodies and emerge in the intestines at various time.  Thus, we

recommend furry babies have a fecal exam several times during their beginning

series of vaccinations in order to clear them more completely during their young lives.

Adults acquire these intestinal parasites from ingesting microscopic eggs from their

environments.  We suggest performing a fecal examination on adult cats and dogs

once every year during their annual well visit.

Heartworm/tick ELISA test - Canines

The heartworm /tick test we use is a rapid blood test that can identify actual proteins (antigens) from adult heartworms present in the heart or pulmonary artery of a dog.  It also can identify antibody proteins from several tick-borne diseases (Lyme disease, ehrlichia canis, anaplasmosis).  These antibodies, if present, indicate that the dog was exposed to the respective germs that could cause disease.  Dogs should have an occult heartworm test once every year.  Not only does this test assure that the pet's heartworm preventative has been working, it also supports many satisfaction guarantees by the makers of heartworm preventatives.    

FeLV/FIV ELISA test - Felines

This is a rapid blood test that is used to identify Feline Leukemia Virus and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus infections.  We often suggest testing kittens and cats for these serious diseases as soon as possible after adopting the pet into the home.   That would be the time when exposure to other household pets is minimal and emotional attachments are just forming.