Examinations - Island Life Animal Hospital


Many silent conditions are caught while pets undergo a comprehensive physical exam, including during their wellness visit. Wellness services involve but are not limited to a comprehensive physical exam, vaccinations, and parasite testing such as heartworm and fecal testing.  Blood panels, radiographs, and ultrasound may also be recommended based on exam findings, age of your pet, or familial/breed related history of disease.  Exams begin with our team gaining a thorough medical history of your pet including discussing any questions you may have about your pet’s well-being. We’ll also go over diet, behavior, medications, and any other concerns you may have. 

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Wellness Exam for Adult Dogs and Cats

Our comprehensive wellness exams include an overall evaluation of your pet’s condition and health. The exams can be tailored to the young or senior pet. Our doctors will examine your pet’s overall appearance and physical condition including:

  • Obtaining vital signs
  • Evaluating the condition of the coat and skin also checking for external parasites such as fleas and/or ticks. Living in Florida can also cause many allegies due to molds, mildews, pollens, parasites, and more.
  • Checking for any “lumps and bumps”
  • Observing behavioral disposition, mobility, and gait
  • Testing the eyes for visual acuity and/or disease
  • Examining ear canal and tympanic bulla for signs of infection or growths
  • Performing chest auscultations to assess your pets cardiovascular and pulmonary health
  • Abdominal palpations to test for pain or tenderness and feel for organ size and regularity as well as masses.
  • Perform an oral exam of your pet’s mouth to assess any conditions that can lead to periodontal disease. We check for tartar/calculus on the teeth and gum line, recession, gingivitis, and oral masses. Dental disease in the long run can affect your pet’s heart, liver, kidneys, and overall health. Based on the findings of your pet’s dental health, we may recommend a dental procedure to help improve your pet’s health.

Illness Exam

Also known as a sick pet exam, the illness exam focuses on your pet who is feeling under the weather or displays signs of being sick. We trust pet owners who know their pet’s general disposition, so if you feel your pet is not acting like their normal selves, we want to assist helping them feel better as soon as possible.

If unsure about what symptoms may warrant bringing your sick pet in for an evaluation at Island Life Animal Hospital, look for the following signs that can include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Runny nose/sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Change in behavior
  • Difficulty urinating or defecating
  • Limping or having difficulty walking
  • Increase in body temperature

New Puppy or Kitten Exam

Whether young or old, we love all pets, yet it is always an adorable moment to see a puppy or kitten in our office. We recommend starting your new addition out with an initial exam by one of our doctors to assess overall health and wellness. We will discuss what we need to do to keep your pet healthy and happy. Puppy and Kitten Wellness is achieved over the course of several visits to help boost your young pet’s immunity and based on medical history, vaccinations and age.

During each exam, we will discuss:

  • Vaccine history and schedule
  • Discuss heartworm, flea and tick preventions as well as intestinal parasites
  • Your pet’s nutritional needs and dietary requirements
  • Behavioral training
  • Spaying or neutering your pet at the appropriate age

For puppies and kittens, we recommend the following wellness schedule:

8 weeks
Wellness Exam, Distemper (DHPP or FVRCP), Stool Sample Check, and a Deworming.
12 weeks
Wellness Exam, Distemper (DHPP or FVRCP), Stool Sample Check, Deworming.
16 weeks
Wellness Exam, Distemper (DHPP or FVRCP) and Rabies.

For kittens, we also recommend a series of two Feline Leukemia vaccinations at the age of 12 and 16 weeks. They will need to be tested for FIV and FELV prior to this vaccination.

For Stool Sample Checks: Intermittent detection of egg shedding of parasites requires us to also do multiple stool sample checks to ensure the best health for your pet.

We ask that you try to bring in a stool sample from your pet on each puppy/kitten visit.  Many of these intestinal parasites shed eggs and larva that can only be seen under the microscope. Some of these parasites can be transmitted to people so this is especially important when children and immunocompromised adults are in the house.

Drop-off Exam

Life happens and can be unpredictable with our busy schedules. For your convenience, we provide a drop-off service where your pet can be evaluated while you are at work or running errands. We start with a thorough history of your pet and who will undergo the same concentrated evaluation as our other examination. Based on our findings, we will recommend diagnostics, if indicated, and together we will discuss a treatment plan that is best for both your pet and you.