The best way to ensure that your pet, and your household, are safe from intestinal parasites is with yearly routine fecal exams. Intestinal parasites are difficult to detect with a standard veterinary examination, but fecals allow your vet to spot problems and treat them quickly.
What is a fecal exam?
A fecal is when your vet does a microscopic examination of your pet's feces. This simple test can be done right in your vet's office, and will allow your vet to identify and treat any infections that could be compromising your pet's health, or even the health of your family members.
What do fecals detect?
Having a fecal exam allows your vet to determine if your pet has intestinal parasites such as hookworms or roundworms. Intestinal parasites can make pets irritable, uncomfortable, or develop into more serious conditions. In some cases parasites can even be transmitted to humans.
The only way to detect intestinal parasites is with a fecal exam since the parasites are generally hidden within your pet's gastrointestinal tract.
How do I prepare for my pet's fecal?
In order to get the most accurate results, you should collect a fresh stool sample and bring it to your vet within 4 to 6 hours.
It's important to note that drying out and dehydrating kills many of the parasites that may be present, and could potentially mask their presence.
How often does my pet need a fecal?
Fecals should be done at least annually for all pets, but puppies and animals with gastrointestinal issues may require more frequent exams. Your vet will let you know how frequently you should bring in your pet’s stool sample for testing.
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