JoJo’s Perch – wellness examinations

Hello my furry, feathery, and scaly friends! Is everyone ready for summer to start? I know I am! Summer fruit time! Cherries are finally back in season, so excited.

Today I want to talk about something that is universally hated (even by our two legged friends) but it is so important for our health. Yep, it’s time for a routine wellness exam.

They’re not fun. Trust me; I’ve had my fair share so I know. You think you’re going to the dog park or a birdy play-date when suddenly your chauffer takes a wrong turn and takes you to the vet. Google Maps is obviously broken. And then you have strange people holding you and looking down your throat and up your tail feathers, all the while ignoring your indignant “Excuse me!” There might be treats and good pats, but it ruins your whole day. But what if I told you that it was all necessary to keep you in the best of health?

In all the poking and prodding the doctor is actually looking for little clues about your health. By looking at your eyes and ears, hair or feathers the doctor can spot the first signs of infections or diseases. And by feeling your abdomen he or she can feel if there are any abnormal masses or formations on your inner self. As you all know, we animals love to hide the beginnings of illness; especially us birds. All of our wild ancestors would have been easy prey if we advertised to the predators that we were an easy lunch. Sometimes there will be the smallest sign of something starting and that can lead to the next dreaded part – lab work.

The doctor can tell a lot from a physical exam – how well the heart and lungs are working; how your joints are feeling and moving; if you are having any dental issues. But it’s hard to tell if there is a bacteria growing somewhere it shouldn’t or how well the kidneys and the liver are doing their jobs. A quick swab or a blood and urine sample sent out to the lab can give the doctor a good idea about what’s going on inside. Even if you are healthy, your doctor might recommend doing lab work at certain times in your life in order to get a “baseline.” Now if you do get sick your doctor knows what is normal for you. This routine lab work can also find abnormalities that are the start of a disease that can be treated and stopped before it progresses too far.

During your exam your doctor and your driver will be discussing your lifestyle – your diet and exercise routines, whether or not you go to places with a high risk of infection. Based on your answer the doctor will recommend any changes (like the dreaded word “diet”) and will set up a wellness plan just for you. Your plan will consist of vaccines to protect you and routine lab work like Heartworm tests and fecal test to make sure you stay parasite free. Both disease protection and lack of parasites are needed for a perfect summer.

Give Santa Rosa Veterinary Hospital a call to schedule your wellness exam today to make sure that you have plenty of summer and cherries left to help heal the indignity of the whole business.

About me…

I’m a 24 year old Senegal parrot. As with any creature as small as I am, I have a big attitude and know how to get what I want. I share my home with my human servant Megan and her Australian Shepherds, whom I torment to my heart’s content. Coming from a rescue, my history is a little bit of a mystery. My early life has caused me to be a picker, but it doesn’t matter too much – I know I’m gorgeous!

Have a question for me? You can contact me through my secretary, Megan at meganvd@santarosavet.com or you can call one of my staff members at your friendly Veterinary Hospital – the Santa Rosa Veterinary Hospital.