Getting your cat an annual fecal exam at your veterinarian's office is the best way to ensure that your pet and your family is safe from intestinal parasites. Yearly fecals give your Santa Barbara vet an opportunity to detect intestinal parasites before a more serious condition occurs.
What is a fecal exam?
A fecal exam is a microscopic examination of your pet's feces, which is completed at your veterinarian's office. These annual fecals will help your vet to identify and treat any infections that could be compromising your pet's health, and even the health of members of your household.
What do fecals detect?
Your vet will search for any signs of parasites like roundworms and hookworms when performing a fecal exam. These parasites can make your pet irritable and uncomfortable. They may also lead to a number of more serious health issues, Some parasites are even transmissible to people.
Since intestinal parasites live in your pet's gastrointestinal tract, they are hidden from view. This makes fecals the best way to detect their presence.
How do I prepare for my pet's fecal?
Collect a fresh stool sample from your pet and bring it in to your vet's office the same day. Ideally this should be within 4 to 6 hours for the most accurate results.
It's key to not allow the sample you take to dehydrate or dry out. Many potential parasites will be killed, which may mask their presence from detection.
How often does my pet need a fecal?
You should have your pet tested for internal parasites at least annually. Puppies and animals with gastrointestinal issues may need fecal exams more frequently. Ask your vet how often you should bring your pet's stool sample in for a fecal.