An Overview of Veterinary Diagnostic Lab Tests

All pet owners want their pets to live long and happy lives. This can be accomplished by taking the pet to the vet for regular checkups. On the other hand, diagnostic tests are required for a veterinarian to better understand the pet’s health. Pets’ outer appearance, like humans, may not reflect their interior state. However, appropriate diagnostic testing may assist the veterinarian in diagnosing and treating a problem before it worsens. Among the obligatory diagnostic tests for your pet are the following:

Clinical Chemistry

Clinical chemistry is the study of a specimen’s chemical makeup. Other bodily fluids may also be studied. Typically, the sample is the liquid component of the blood (serum or plasma). Clinical chemistry and physical exams for pets are critical for establishing the health of various organs (kidneys, liver, etc.).

They can help in the diagnosis of disorders like diabetes and pancreatitis. These tests may also be used to evaluate your pet’s therapy response.


Cytology studies individual cells, structure and origin, function(s), and death. Pathologists can provide a veterinarian with information on the cells in your pet’s body. Tissue or fluid samples are obtained using a fine-needle biopsy, and slides are created and stained for microscopic inspection to determine the types of cells present.

Fluid Analysis

Aside from blood, fluid analysis studies other body fluids (urine, joint fluid, etc.). Experts that evaluate body fluids work closely with other professionals to provide information about an animal’s health. Typically, fluid analysis involves checking for cells and proteins in the sample. Additionally, clinical chemistry testing for specific drugs may be performed.


Hematology studies the biological components of the blood and how they vary in health and illness. The most common blood test is a full blood count. This test provides basic information about anemia, inflammation, and clotting by assessing the number and kind of cells circulating in the bloodstream. If you observe any inflammation in your pet’s gums, look up”veterinary dentist near me” to determine if lab testing is required.


Histology studies the microscopic anatomy (structure) of plant and animal tissues. Pathologists specializing in histology examine small tissue samples to determine whether they are healthy or diseased. Pathologists have studied the causes and effects of disease and can frequently pinpoint the reason for abnormal tissue shapes or cells.

If your veterinarian suspects cancer or another condition that causes tissue changes, he or she will send small tissue samples to a pathologist.


Microbiology studies single-celled organisms such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, and other microbes. Microbiology professionals in a veterinary laboratory can perform numerous tests to detect signs of sickness. Growing and then identifying viruses, bacteria, and fungi is a common procedure.


Serology examines blood serum and other body fluids. Most serologic tests assess the number of antibodies (called the titer) present and reactive to a certain pathogenic microorganism. A high amount of antibodies, or an increase in their level between two samples collected a few weeks apart, suggests that an animal has been exposed to the bacterium and its immune system has generated antibodies against the infectious agent.


Toxicology investigates how poisons impact animals. Let’s assume that your veterinarian on or any other place suspects your pet has been poisoned. In that instance, he or she will collect samples for toxicologic testing to assess the type of toxin and the amount of potential damage.


Veterinarians use various veterinary technology to diagnose diseases, monitor disease progression or drug response and test healthy animals for underlying ailments. Most veterinary hospitals have a diagnostic laboratory packed with numerous diagnostic devices to quickly examine your pet’s health and determine what therapy is required. When you observe unusual symptoms or behavior in your pet, schedule an appointment with a reputable clinic that offers these services.

Types of Cancer in Pets: What Are They and How Are They Treated?

There are some diseases that affect not only humans but also our pets. This disease is cancer. This kind of disease can be experienced by pets of all ages and breeds. As a responsible pet owner, it must be your primary concern to take them to a vet for cancer’s early detection and treatment. 

This article will discuss the common types of cancers and how they are treated. 


Lymphoma is a kind of cancer that devastates the animal’s lymphatic system, which is part of the immune system. This type of cancer is common in dogs and cats and occurs in all ages and breeds. We can see this cancer with symptoms such as:

  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Weight loss
  • Bouts of diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • General weakness

The treatment is usually started with a biopsy of affected tissues by a specialist in veterinary oncology. Chemotherapy and radiation therapy are usually needed for a majority of cases.

Mast Cell Tumor

The most common skin tumors in pet dogs and cats are mast cell tumors. When an animal has this condition, we can see lumps on the skin, itching, redness of the skin, or ulcerations. The surgical removal of these lumps and chemotherapy are the usual courses of action for any veterinarian that encounters these issues. You can learn more about veterinary surgery through a clinic’s website.


Another type of skin cancer that affects cats and dogs is melanoma, which occurs in the parts of the body that contains pigment. The parts that are affected are the animal’s eyes, skin, mouth, pads of the feet, and toenail beds. Bleeding, as well as wart-like lumps and changes in skin pigmentation, are usually the symptoms. 

The best treatment for melanoma are surgery and radiation, as chemotherapy is not as effective.

Osteosarcoma (Bone Cancer)

Bone cancer or osteosarcoma is a common type of cancer in larger breeds of dogs, like german shepherds and golden retrievers. You can see that a dog with this disease has a significant loss of appetite, indications of pain, and swelling in some parts of the dog. The common treatment of bone cancer in dogs is amputation of the affected limb or radiation therapy if surgery cannot be done.


Hemangiosarcoma is a type of cancer that comes from cells that produce blood cells. The internal organs are usually the ones damaged when this type of cancer worsens. You can notice difficulty in breathing, swelling, nosebleeds, and general weakness as part of the symptoms. Chemotherapy and surgery are usually done to prevent the further growth of cancer cells.


Fibrosarcoma is a cancer that affects the connective tissues. This type of cancer causes lumps under the skin that develop quickly. These lumps may swell and ulcerate and cause infections. In some cases, after a veterinary MRI session, radiation therapy can be used, but a surgical operation would be the most effective way of eliminating fibrosarcoma.


The diseases that affect us can also occur in our pets. Having this knowledge of cancer symptoms in pets is an advantage. Make certain to have your pets undergo regular veterinary checkups for specialists to detect the early signs of cancer and ensure that prompt treatment will be provided. These treatments may involve surgical procedures, radiation, and chemotherapy. As a result, you can give your pets a strong chance of survival and regaining their health.

Pet Wellness Plans and Pet Insurance in a Nutshell

Pet Wellness Plans and Pet Insurance in a Nutshell

Both pet insurance and pet wellness plans provide advantages for the cost of your pet’s medical treatment, yet each works differently. When deciding on a health plan or pet insurance, you need to understand the kind of treatments your pet is insured for. Since pet health insurance is not the same as human health insurance, your pet’s yearly checkups and vaccinations are not covered by your plan. It’s important to understand that a wellness plan differs significantly from a pet insurance plan.

Wellness Plans

Wellness plans are a great alternative to pet insurance since you only pay for the procedures and services you utilize over the year. By paying a small monthly charge rather than a high one-time cost at each visit, wellness plans let you take a more proactive approach to veterinarian treatment. These services help your veterinarian determine any prospective conditions or diseases your pet may have at an early stage before they aggravate and become more difficult to cure.

Common Procedures Covered:

Wellness Exams

A pet wellness exam is a medical checkup, similar to an annual physical, focusing on early disease identification and helping to assure your pet’s long-term health.

Dental Cleanings

A dental cleaning visit includes a comprehensive dental examination, teeth cleaning and polishing to eliminate plaque and tartar that can cause periodontal disease.


A microchip is a radio-frequency identification transponder about the size of a grain of rice that holds a specific identifying number.


The outcome of either surgery is the same– the pet is sterilized, preventing unintended pregnancies. Additionally, if you spay and neuter your pet, they may avoid several illnesses and medical disorders. In general, “fixing” your pet results in a longer, healthier life.


As a crucial component of veterinary care, veterinarians recommend routine dog & cat vaccinations. Developing your pet’s immunity and avoiding infections necessitate regular vaccines.

Pet Insurance

Pet insurance is intended to help you cover the cost of any possible emergency veterinarian care for your animal. Emergency therapies and treating severe ailments like cancer and diabetes can be expensive. If your pet insurance covers your pet for any ailments, illnesses, or mishaps, you can get financial assistance to meet the expenses.

Common Procedures Covered:


Surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy are the most commonly used treatments for animal cancer and tumors (also called radiotherapy). Each choice can be utilized independently or combined with other medical procedures.


There are pet emergencies, and then there are problems that can wait until the following day. However, don’t be afraid to ask your veterinarian for any inquiries if you need additional information. Always bring your pet to reputable facilities like Surfside Animal Hospital.


Any pet can experience orthopedic issues affecting bones, joints, or muscles. These conditions can be minor inconveniences or life-threatening.

Skin Conditions

If they suffer from skin disease, dogs and cats can experience a considerable decline in quality of life. Similar illnesses usually have significantly more noticeable symptoms than other disorders, provided how easily noticeable skin problems are.

Which option is better?

Your choice of which option is best for you will depend on how well you understand how wellness plans and pet insurance may benefit you and your pet. Pet owners can choose between pet health insurance and wellness programs to ensure their pets receive complete healthcare coverage. Some choose to enroll in both, while others opt for just one or the other. Ask your vet which choice is best for you and your beloved pet.

Tips for Keeping Your Pet’s Teeth in Good Shape

We must keep our pet’s teeth in good working order and prevent dental and periodontal disease. Our pets require regular dental care. Find out more about pet dental care.

Maintaining Dental Hygiene

There are numerous contradictory details regarding pet dental care. Any pet store or grocery store will have a dizzying array of products for cats and dogs, all of which claim to meet their dental hygiene requirements.

1. Appropriate nutrition

According to scientific evidence, feeding your pet is an easy way to maintain dental hygiene. When chewed, Royal Canin Dental biscuits’ unique shape, size, and texture produce a mechanical brushing effect on teeth, assisting in removing tartar and plaque. Furthermore, tartar reduction is aided by adding a specific nutrient that reduces plaque deposition.

2. Clear the accumulation

These products work in two ways: they reduce overall bacterial loads in your pet’s mouth, which helps prevent bad breath and soften plaque on the tooth surface. A healthy diet, regular brushing, or chewing can eliminate soft plaque more effectively.

3. Chews and Bones

Chewing products are beneficial because they help distribute saliva around the teeth and remove plaque. Some dogs and cats cannot consume bones due to a medical condition or gastrointestinal sensitivity. Dental fractures, choking hazards, and ingestion injuries can all be caused by bones. We recommend getting dental chews from a pet supply store.

Sometimes when our pets is being too playful, they ingest bones accidentally and may require veterinary surgery. Nobody wants to lose a pet because of a bone that became lodged in their throat, so finding a good veterinarian is essential. If you have any questions regarding the needs of your pet, get in touch with the veterinary healthcare team right away.

4. Pet’s Teeth Cleaning

 It is no surprise that dogs and cats benefit from routine tooth brushing because their dental plaque accumulates 12 hours after brushing. Brushing your teeth is the “gold standard” method of keeping them clean. Humans brush their teeth twice daily; your pet should have excellent pet dental care daily.

There are various dental brushes, styles, and pastes available. One of the additional tools available is finger brushes. Most pet dental kits include a toothbrush with two heads and toothpaste formulated specifically for your pet’s mouth. You must use a pet-specific dental paste because cats and dogs cannot use fluoride-containing toothpaste designed for humans.

From a young age, you must teach your pets to accept having their teeth brushed. It is ideal for a puppy or kitten because it promotes gradual system development.

Why should I brush the teeth of my pet?

Good dental hygiene is required to prevent the growth of bacteria on the teeth. Bacteria that cause pus and inflammation are appealing to white blood cells. Surprisingly, the pus does not affect the teeth. However, you may severely damage the area’s bone and gums. It causes bone and gum loss, worsens over time, and leads to tooth loss.

The entire process is known as periodontal disease, the most common disease on the planet. As a result, you should brush your pet’s teeth. Cleaning is critical for elderly animals and animals suffering from other ailments.

If your pet is exhibiting symptoms of an internal condition, there are many specialists available to assist you, see here.


There is a chance that your dog or cat has the dental disease if they are two years old or older. Take the same care with their teeth as you would with your own. Using a daily dental care product is key to keeping your dog’s gums and teeth healthy.

Common Types of Heart Conditions in Pets

One of your pet’s most essential organs, the heart, pumps continuously to deliver oxygen-rich blood to every cell in their body, from the tip of their nose to the tail. It serves as the heart of their cardiovascular system. Your pet’s entire body may be compromised by disease, which can have various adverse effects if it affects their normal heart function.

A pet’s heart condition may be inherited, congenital, or acquired. This indicates that the illness may be inherited, passed down from their parents, present at birth as a sickness or defect, or have evolved throughout your pet’s life.

Heart Conditions in Pets

The heart is an essential organ in your pet’s body. Unfortunately, pet’s occasionally could have problems with this vital organ. The most typical heart conditions that affect pets and how they impact them are discussed below. You can view additional details at this vet clinic.

Valvular Degeneration

The heart of your cat or dog, which resembles the human heart anatomically, is made up of four chambers with valves that open and close to control blood flow. Age-related heart valve deterioration in pets can cause their blood to stop flowing correctly because their heart valves no longer completely close.

The most prevalent kind of valvular degeneration in dogs is degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD). With each pulse, small blood might flow backward through the mitral valve as it swells and loses strength as the dog ages. The medical term for this blood flow backward is mitral valve regurgitation.

Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM)

The heart muscle deteriorates due to the family of diseases known as DCM in dogs. Because less blood is pumped out of the heart with each heartbeat, the walls and chambers begin to stretch and enlarge, endangering dogs.

DCM that develops naturally is regrettably progressive and irreversible. A quick diagnosis and the skill of the cardiology team can extend symptom-free life and raise the quality of life for your cherished pet.

Heart Arrhythmias

An electrical impulse that passes through the heart muscle starts and regulates each heartbeat in your pet. Each impulse starts at the apex of the heart and moves via a specific conduction route before triggering a synchronized contraction of the heart. An abnormal heart rhythm, or arrhythmia, may form if these electrical impulses do not start correctly, follow the right path, or pass through the entire conduction system.

During a physical examination, your family veterinarian can spot an arrhythmia. You might observe typical symptoms of weakness, sluggishness, intolerance to exercise or collapse at home. Your veterinarian can then offer dog or cat heart arrhythmia treatment.

Congenital Heart Disease

Congenital heart conditions are present from birth and are caused by faulty heart development. When your pet’s exam reveals a heart murmur, your family veterinarian will typically diagnose these diseases. Congenital heart diseases can be identified through a quick ultrasound of the heart.

Minimally invasive surgery may be able to improve or repair the anomaly, depending on the congenital heart condition that is present. After these surgeries, pets often bounce back fast and enjoy long, prosperous, and healthy lives. Rocky Mountain Veterinary Cardiology uses centesis to help manage discomfort in patients with congestive heart failure.