Of course they do! Just like people, dogs, and cats, exotic pets’ bodies undergo a series of changes as they get older; exotic pets of all species – birds, ferrets, rabbits, rodents, reptiles, sugar gliders, hedgehogs, pot-bellied pigs, and others – all experience aging changes. These changes may be true medical issues, or they may simply be alterations in nutritional or behavioral needs. Unfortunately, most exotic pet owners don’t have the information to recognize these changes as they occur. As a result, many preventable problems in these pets go undetected until it’s too late.
To help exotic pet owners try to recognize these problems, the Veterinary Center for Birds & Exotics is launching a new program – the EXOTIC PET LIFE STAGE HEALTHCARE PROGRAM – to help owners become more aware of the changing needs of their exotic pets as they age.
What is this program?
This program is a comprehensive look at exotic pet health care throughout life’s various stages with an emphasis on how exotic pets’ needs change as they age. We focus not only on the requirements of your pet as dictated by his/her age, but also on his/her specific, individual needs as determined by his/her previous medical, nutritional, and behavioral history.
Why do you need it?
Our requirements – medical, nutritional, behavioral – change as we get older; in fact, we actually see different medical specialists (pediatricians, internists, and geriatric specialists) as we age. For example, we adjust our eating habits if our doctor tells us our cholesterol is high, or we stop running 3 miles a day if our knees start to hurt from arthritis. We also recognize the changing needs of our dogs and cats as they age. Why should our exotic pets (birds, ferrets, rabbits, rodents, reptiles, or other exotic species) be any different?
How will it help you?
By determining at what life stage your pet is and by focusing on your pet’s individualized needs at this life stage, we can provide you with specific recommendations tailored directly to your pet to try to prevent illness and to try to keep him/her healthy. By following the recommendations we make about preventative medical care, nutrition, environment, and social interaction/behavior, you can help your pet live a long happy life, whatever stage he/she is in.
What does it cost?
The good news is the Veterinary Center offers this novel life stage program at no additional cost beyond the fee for a typical office visit. You will receive an estimate for any specific recommended tests or treatments we make for your individual pet. As part of our life stage program, we will continue to offer you the same cutting edge medical care that we always have but from the new perspective of what’s appropriate to your pet as he/she moves through life.
How do you get involved in it?
To sign up for our life stage health care program, all you have to do is call us and make an appointment. You and your pet will see one of our vets and be assigned to a life stage advisor to follow you and your pet as you implement the changes we recommend. Your life stage advisor is a licensed technician experienced in exotic pet care who will be there to answer any questions you have as you work on following through with life stage recommendations. She will be there for you to make sure that you are successful in implementing these changes.
So, what are you waiting for? Call the Veterinary Center, and sign up for a life stage healthcare assessment today!