How Often Should I Take My Dog to the Vet?

Dog visiting a vet

Just like humans need a checkup every now and then, your furry friend can also benefit from regular vet visits – but how often should I take my dog to the vet? The answer depends on your dog’s age. While puppies need frequent visits to keep up with multi-step vaccines, healthy adult dogs usually only need an annual checkup to stay on track. Take a look at our guide to vet visits and pet care, and find out just when to take your dog to the vet for normal checkups and emergencies.

When to Take Your Dog to the Vet By Age

Puppies (Up to 1 Year)

Between shots and spaying and neutering, puppies get very familiar with vet visits as they grow! In fact, puppies need to pop into the office every 3 to 4 weeks until they reach the age of 16 weeks for routine vaccinations. Your vet will also inspect your little one for any potential health issues, as well as start heartworm and flea and tick preventatives.

Adults (1 to 7 Years)

As long as your dog appears healthy and happy, you can schedule your vet visits annually. This gives your vet the opportunity to check in and monitor your canine’s health, while also keeping up on booster shots and blood work. Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to ask any less-urgent questions about issues like weight and training.

Seniors (7 Years and Above)

Even if your senior dog is still bursting with energy, it’s a good idea to start planning vet visits twice a year. Older dogs are more susceptible to conditions like joint problems, declining vision, and other concerns. You may need to switch to a senior-specific diet with extra supplementation. Your vet will let you know based on your dog’s health and your own reporting, so be sure to mention if you notice any changes.

Emergency Trips

Unexpected things happen when you have a pet. If you’re wondering “Should i take my dog to the vet?”, get on the phone if you notice the following:

  • Open wounds or broken bones
  • Unconsciousness or labored breathing
  • Vomiting or diarrhea for longer than 24 hours
  • Bloody vomit or stool
  • Blood coming from eyes, ears, nose, or mouth
  • Signs of extreme pain
  • Swollen and hard abdomen
  • Poisoning

If you’re not sure what to do, it never hurts to give your vet a call to assess the situation. They can tell you how soon to schedule your visit.

Dog being held by a doctor

Need to schedule an appointment with a Veterinarian?

Please contact Springbrook Animal Care Center.