A fecal Exam a year is the best way to keep your pets and family safe from intestinal parasites. In this blog, our Lancaster vets explain how fecal exams give your vet the chance to test your pet for intestinal parasites before more serious conditions develop.
What are Fecal Exams?
A fecal exam is a microscopic examination of your cat or dog's feces, and it can be performed at your primary care veterinarian's office. Annual fecal exams will help your vet diagnose and treat any infections that could be harming the health of your pet and maybe even the health of everyone in your home.
What do Fecal Exams Look For?
When your vet conducts a fecal exam, they search for any clues of parasites including hookworms and roundworms. These parasites can make your cat or dog uncomfortable and irritable and can potentially lead to more serious problems. A handful of parasites could even be transmitted to humans.
Intestinal parasites live in your pet's gastrointestinal tract, hiding them from view. That's why fecal exams are the best way to detect their presence.
How can I Get Ready for My Pet's Fecal Exam?
Grab a fresh sample of your pet's stool and bring it to your veterinarian's office the same day, preferably within 4 to 6 hours for the most accurate results.
It's very important that you don't let the stool sample dehydrate or dry out, because lots of the potential parasites will be killed, which in turn can mask their presence.
How Often Will My Pet Require a Fecal Exam?
You should have your pet tested for internal parasites at least once a year. Puppies and animals with gastrointestinal problems might need to have a fecal exam done more frequently. Ask your vet how often you should bring your pet's stool sample in for a fecal exam.