Polly, a 14 year old Pekingese, came in for her routine bi-annual exam and lab work to see Dr. Godfrey. While in the exam room with Angela, her technician, she was being her usual fun playful self. After completing her physical exam Dr. Godfrey said she looked in perfect health and you would never have suspected that anything was wrong.
As you know our pets age a lot more rapidly than us, because of this we recommend all pets to have a bi-annual exam and early disease detection lab work once a year. Part of the recommended tests is a complete urinalysis. An ultrasound machine is used to obtain a sterile sample of urine and during this process it was noted that Polly had bladder stones, which would need to be confirmed with radiographs. Dr. Godfrey then reviewed his findings with Polly’s family to discuss the next steps for treatment.
The radiographs confirmed that indeed there were 2 bladder stones which needed to be removed before they did any damage to the bladder which would cause Polly significant discomfort. Blood work came back all normal and ok to proceed with a cystotomy (removal of bladder stones). The surgery was performed successfully and the stones were sent off to an outside lab for a pathologist to determine what type of stones they were. The report came back confirming that they were Calcium Oxalate stones. To help prevent the reformation of stones in the future, Polly was put on a special urinary diet. After her unexpected ordeal Polly recovered quickly from surgery and was back to her regular happy self in no time.
Pets are great at hiding illness and issues, and it is our job keep them happy and healthy which is why we recommend doing routine annual lab work on all of our patients.