A complete physical examination proceeds as follows. We commence with an examination of the mouth focusing on the teeth, gums and tongue. There is not much to do for an
examination of the nose other than to look for swelling and for discharge from the nostrils. The eyes are next examined for swelling, inflammation and redness.
The eyes should be compared with each other for symmetry, especially the pupils. If abnormalities are discovered or if there is concern regarding the pet’s vision,
then the retina should be examined with an ophthalmoscope. The ears both the outer and the ear canal, with the help of an otoscope, are next examined for skin problems,
ear mites, yeast infections as well as polyps and growths. As our examination usually proceeds from front to back, next up are the lymph glands in the neck which we check
for swelling and pain. The thyroid glands are also located in the neck and are checked for growths and enlargements.
We all know that a stethoscope is used to examine the heart. Specifically we are listening and counting the heart rate. We also listen to hear if the heart
is beating regularly or if there is an abnormal rhythm. Finally we listen for heart murmurs or abnormal heart sounds. The stethoscope is also used to listen to the
lungs for problems with breathing. When a physician examines us with a stethoscope, we are often asked to disrobe and to breathe deeply. Unfortunately for our furry
patients, we can’t remove their hair and usually don’t respond to our requests for them to breathe deeply, therefore it is imperative that clients refrain from talking
while the doctor is using the stethoscope. As we proceed from front to rear, next is the fine art of abdominal palpation or using one or both hands to feel the organs in
the pet’s abdomen, in doing so we can gain enormous amounts of information to determine what is ailing them.
The skin & hair of your pet is next examined. We look at the skin and hair especially around the perineum (the rectal and genital area), the face and the
underbelly. If your pet is showing any signs of weakness or lameness the appropriate limbs and joints are examined. Your pet is then weighed and if your pet is sick i.e.
depressed, lethargic, suffering from weight loss, decreased appetite, vomiting etc. we usually take its temperature and check for dehydration.