Having your vet perform an annual fecal exam for your pet is the best way to keep your furry friend - and your family - safe from intestinal parasites. Our Albany vets share what you need to know.
What is a fecal exam?
Your veterinarian can perform a fecal exam at their office. This microscopic examination of your pet's feces should be completed on an annual basis to help your vet identify and treat any infections that may compromise your pet's health, and even the health of people living in your house.
What do fecals detect?
When performing fecal exams, your vet will check for any signs of parasites such as roundworms sand hookworms. These parasites can not only make pets uncomfortable and irritable, but can also lead to many more serious health issues. Many parasites can even be transmitted to people.
Intestinal parasites reside in your pet's gastrointestinal tract, hidden from view. This is why fecals are the best way to detect their presence.
How do I prepare for my pet's fecal?
Obtain a fresh stool sample and bring it to your vet's office the same day - ideally within 4 to 6 hours for the most accurate results.
It's critical not to allow the stool sample to dry out or dehydrate, as several of the potential parasites will be killed, which in turn will mask their presence.
How often does my pet need a fecal?
Have your pet tested for internal parasites at least once each year. Puppies and animals with gastrointestinal issues may need fecal exams more frequently. Ask your vet how often you should bring a stool sample from your pet in for a fecal.