Published Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Pet tips offered by Newnan animal warden

By Gina Snider

City of Newnan Public Information Officer

As responsible pet owners, we agree to care for our furry friends in sickness and in health. But as the economy softens and veterinary costs rise, how do we do what’s best for our pet?

The city of Newnan Animal Warden offers the following tips to help you save money on your pet’s health care.

• Schedule Regular Check-Ups —Remember the saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?” Well, it applies to pets, too. Don’t skip your pet’s yearly exam. It’s much more expensive — and risky — to treat illnesses than to protect against them.

• Personalize Your Pet’s Vaccines — Hard times are not an excuse to skip your pet’s annual shots, but it does make sense to talk to your vet about personalizing your pet’s vaccine protocol. Some vaccines are optional, while others are essential in preventing serious diseases. Rabies vaccinations are not optional.

• Spay or Neuter Your Pet — Spaying or neutering your pet can save a lot of money by preventing serious health problems including uterine, ovarian and testicular cancer. Many local shelters provide resources for low-cost or no-cost spay/ neuter surgeries.

• Brush Your Pet’s Teeth — Dental disease — such as tartar, gingivitis, loose or infected teeth — can lead to heart and kidney problems and expensive procedures. Start a daily dental routine to keep your pet’s teeth and gums healthy.

• Protect Your Pet from Parasites — Flea and tick infestations can cause a host of costly medical problems from minor skin irritations to life-threatening anemia. Stick with a topical flea and tick solution to keep the critters at bay.

• Consider Pet Health Insurance — If the cost of an emergency vet visit or serious illness would be a financial strain, consider investing in pet health insurance, while your pet is healthy. Be sure to read the fine print, though — not all plans are created equal.

• Shop Smart — Whether he’s looking for pet food, medicine or grooming supplies, the smart shopper clips coupons and buys in bulk. It’s also a good idea to shop veterinary practices by comparing fees for preventative care.

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