General Question

janbb's avatar

Does a young dog really need a well visit every six months?

Asked by janbb (43969 points ) January 21st, 2014

Getting emails from the vet to schedule a check-up for Frodo. I wonder if it is really necessary or just another Thanksgiving Day feast? I do love my vet but it seems a bit like overkill.

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32 Answers

Coloma's avatar

No. If he is current on his puppy vaccinations, growing well, eating well, no parasites, no issues he is fine. Vets are in it for the money, not to say they do not care for animals, but, it is a business and of course they are going to promote as much business for themselves as the pet owner/consumer allows.

Coloma's avatar

Make sure he gets plenty of sunshine as it is available at this time of year to promote healthy bone development.

livelaughlove21's avatar

I’d love to go six month without taking Daisy to the vet. She seems to end up there every few weeks for one reason or another, and she’s only one! If Frodo is healthy, I don’t see why you couldn’t go an entire year without taking him to the vet.

marinelife's avatar

I think once a year is fine.

johnpowell's avatar

Do it yearly. Just don’t expect sympathy if you have to have the dog put to sleep in 8 months. In my mind it is no different than adopting a kid. If you aren’t willing to do what is needed you had no business adopting (or buying). Would you skip doctor visits for your kid and call it a cash grab as a excuse?

janbb's avatar

@johnpowell Well – that’s a little harsh. Do you have knowledge or evidence that every six months is necessary? Believe me, I am spending plenty on this dog.

KNOWITALL's avatar

Under one year old I could see two visits in that first year for development, but as a dog mom of many years, anything more than once a year seems odd to me.

Coloma's avatar

@johnpowell It is entirely possible to be a good pet owner and still exercise prudent financial care and not feel pressured to spend money when it is not needed. I have spent thousands and thousands on my animals, but this last year has me in a compromised financial position. If one of my cats needs a $1000 vet visit at this time it might just have to be a goodbye kitty thing. They are current on vaccinations, spayed, neutered, micro-chipped, and are fed a quality diet, good enough.

Circumstances can change rapidly and as long as said children and pets have the basics, there is nothing wrong with being a wise consumer.

kritiper's avatar

No. If the dog seems happy and doesn’t seems to have any problems, don’t bother. I only took my German Shepherd to the vet when he needed to go and he lived to be almost 16 years old! Very healthy!

longgone's avatar

@johnpowell If you aren’t willing to do what is needed you had no business adopting (or buying).

…@janbb is asking what is needed, isn’t she?

@janbb I would take him to be safe, unless you have had dogs before and trust yourself to know when there’s anything wrong. At the very least, harmless visits will get Frodo used to the vet, which is priceless later on.

janbb's avatar

@longgone That’s true too. Maybe I’ll bring him to this one and see where we’re at in 6 months. He has been there for boarding too.

downtide's avatar

If he’s still under a year old I’d say yes, if only because some breed-specific defects don’t always reveal themselves in the first few months. After that, if he’s otherwise healthy, once a year will be fine.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@johnpowell Wow, completely uncalled for. If a dog is healthy, eating and drinking, pooping and peeing normally, playing, and has no signs or symptoms of anything at all, there’s no reason to go every six months. A dog isn’t going to be “put down” if it’s not sick – and it’s most likely not sick if it’s not showing symptoms. Anything like cancer would present symptoms before a vet will even run the necessary tests to find it. A well check-up consists of little more than checking ears, mouth, heartbeat, and respiration – not imaging and extensive blood work.

That whole “if you aren’t willing to do what is needed you had no business adopting” is a load of crap. The OP clearly is doing what is needed if she’s asking this question. Many dog owners don’t take their dog to the vet even when they’re sick.

We helped a work friend of my husband’s get a dog from my husband’s side of the family that needed a home. We found out over the weekend that someone had poisoned the dog with anti-freeze and it would probably have to be put down. Later on, we found out that this guy was letting the dog roam the neighborhood all day while he was at work instead of confining it to the yard or inside the house. This dog is a Rottweiler – a feared breed with a bad reputation, though this was the sweetest dog I’d ever encountered. This made me so mad, because it’s his fault the dog was poisoned. We then found out that the dog had stopped eating three days prior to the vet visit. Three days?! Who lets their dog suffer for three days before taking it to the vet? It looks like the dog will survive but, needless to say, we wish we never would’ve helped him get the dog and we’ll never help him get another.

With dog owners like this running around, Frodo is damn lucky to have @janbb caring for him and there’s nothing wrong with her asking this question.

YARNLADY's avatar

Just to be safe, you might want to call your vet and ask why they recommend it. Explain that you are on a tight budget and would prefer to wait.

longgone's avatar

@janbb Sounds like a good compromise!

jca's avatar

I second what @YARNLADY said, but not say you’re on tight budget, because that’s not the issue. The issue is more that you are curious why this visit is necessary. I expect that the vet will say they’ll check his heart beat, check his coat, check his eyes, check this, check that.

It reminds me when you get a new car, and the dealer gives you a “maintenance schedule” with all this stuff that needs to be done on a regular basis. The majority of it is checks – check the fluids, check the tire pressure, check this, check that, and the total bill is quite a bit, for what is really a bunch of bullshit.

When I got my last cat, before these two young’uns that I have now, I remember taking the cat to the vet and getting shots, and he rescheduled repeated office visits for booster shot after booster shot. Each time, booster shot and office visit = it all added up. The two young kittens I have now, I took for a vet visit the day I got them, to make sure they were ok, and got tests done and some shots, and then they were seen by a vet when they got neutered, and got rabies shots. Other than that, I said to myself, I am not getting sucked in to repeated visits for booster shots and bullshit. They’re alive, they’re well, and honestly, my other cats don’t go out much and they never go to the vet.

@johnpowell: Wow, I agree with others that you are being unnecessarily harsh. “If you aren’t willing to do what is needed” – the question she is asking is “is it needed.” I’m sure if the dog was in pain or looking sick, she would not hesitate to take him to the vet. It’s not like he wasn’t just at the vet not long ago.

hearkat's avatar

I would probably call and ask them why they are recommending this visit and make my decision based on that. I typically will ask when the next checkup is due at the end of the visit, and even schedule it if they can accommodate that.

Smitha's avatar

As a general rule, a once yearly visit makes sense, as long as they’re healthy. Once they reach old age a six monthly check up is ideal. But checking every six months could be helpful if you can afford it. Our pets tend to have problems we often don’t notice. So getting them checked every six months will help pick up on these problems, sometimes preventing them from worsening and becoming serious.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I get @johnpowell, guys, and those of you who own pets should, too. So many get pets and then maybe lose their job or move and leave them, I think he’s just saying if it needs care, you should find a way to provide it.

After seeing a lot of neglected dogs and rescuing a lot in my life, I know I’ve seen neglect many times, so I get it. Peace.

janbb's avatar

@KNOWITALL But @johnpowell knows me and knows I am not that kind of a person so it seemed a gratuitous attack. Or maybe he just wanted to make a general statement?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@janbb I’m going with general statement. Poor @johnpowell is misunderstood or misunderstands sometimes, I don’t want him to leave. :(

janbb's avatar

Oh – I like him a great deal and I believe he knows that.

jca's avatar

@KNOWITALL: I think what was wrong about what @johnpowell said was that we’re not talking about a neglected dog, we’re talking about the question of whether or not this visit is really necessary, since the dog was there 6 months ago (or less). It’s not clear that this visit is necessary, and the issue of neglect does not seem to apply.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@jca I know, doll, I think it was just a misunderstanding. :) Sometimes when you’ve seen awful thing’s, they jump into your head when you read thing’s like this, does that make sense?

I mean, if you brought a dog in with supperating wounds from a collar being grown into his neck (as I’ve seen before) I’d probably think you were an abuser instead of his rescuer (and kick your butt- lol)

Anyhoosit, I just think sometimes we misunderstand each other and we lose some good people because of it.

jca's avatar

@KNOWITALL: @johnpowell is not leaving, is he?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@jca I don’t know, maybe I’ll PM.

Coloma's avatar

I hope he does not leave, but one must have a skin thicker than tissue paper at times. I don’t know how we went from consumerism to dumping animals quite frankly.
Anyone that abandons an animal to fend for itself needs to be flogged.

livelaughlove21's avatar

Why would anyone think @johnpowell would leave the site over this? His profile is still up. Am I missing something?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@livelaughlove21 There’s just been a lot of misunderstandings in a short time. Other people that has happened to have left, so it just sucks. Seems like a nice person to me.

livelaughlove21's avatar

I’m with @Coloma about the thick skin. Sensitivity and Fluther don’t mix.

jca's avatar

Especially in regards to this. He said something a bunch of people called him out on. If he leaves over that, then wtf?

susanc's avatar

@johnpowell is my hero. If he leaves, I leave. He won’t leave, though. He’s brave and sensible and he’s been here forever. If you have any computer questions you should ask him to help you. He will.

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