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You’ve just been handed a copy of your dog’s lab work, and your vet zeroes in on a few key points. Other values, highs and lows alike, seem to be ignored. Why?
Perhaps your vet has ordered a whole battery of tests for your cat. Are they all necessary? If finances dictated that you choose some tests and eliminate others, could you do so?
CBC with differential. Chem panel. Urinalysis via cystocentesis. Some of these phrases may sound familiar to you from watching medical dramas on television. How much do you, as a pet owner, need to know?
You need to know enough to be able to make informed decisions about the well-being of your pet. The objective of this book is not to replace communication with your veterinarian but to provide the basic information necessary to help you decide how to proceed when your pet is ill. Understanding the basics is crucial to appreciating the need for certain tests, as well as their limitations.
Many veterinarians, fresh out of school, are cautioned against providing lengthy explanations for fear of overwhelming their clients with too much information. Many clients are reluctant to ask for more detailed information. This text is designed to be a bridge between the two.
Sally Suttenfield, DVM, is a veterinarian and certified canine rehabilitationist with over 30 years of experience in small animal private practice. For related pet health topics and information, check out her website at BiteSizedVetGuides.com. You can sign up for her newsletter to learn about new releases, seminars, and more, or follow her blog. You can also find her on TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter.