Because love matters.



Pet Wellness and Preventive Care are important aspects of what we do at the Fairfax Veterinary Clinic. After all, the old saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” holds true for animals just as it does for people. We strive to provide outstanding pet care when your pet is sick, but we find keeping them healthy to be much more satisfying! And of course many pets and many people have different lifestyles, therefore we do not implement a “one size fits all approach”. The goal of our uniquely competent and caring veterinarian in Fairfax, CA is to implement a plan of prevention designed just for your pet.

What is Pet Wellness?

Blue eyed Cat
Every owner wants a happy and healthy pet who will be around a long time. At the same time, they hope to avoid the sometimes significant costs that come along with emergencies, accidents, and illnesses. Enter pet preventative care, otherwise known as pet wellness. A pet wellness plan starts with a comprehensive physical exam, yearly for young healthy animals and more frequently for our younger or older pets, or pets living with a chronic illness. Your veterinarian will examine your pet from head to toe, to identify changes or problems that could turn into something more significant. In consultation with you, we also set up a health strategy for your pet to implement going forward. This can address everything including which vaccinations are appropriate for your pet, what parasite prevention is appropriate for their lifestyle, nutrition and weight management, dental care, behavioral and training issues, and anything else that might be concerning you.

The Pet Wellness Exam

Ensuring top-notch care for your pet is our passion, and the pet wellness exam is the pivotal point in doing just that. Here’s what you can expect during the exam. We will assess all organ systems as appropriate for the age and breed, and as allowed by your pet’s temperament and condition. This typically includes checking the weight and assessing body condition score, taking their temperature, examining the coat and skin, checking the eyes, ears, gums and teeth, palpation of all peripheral lymph nodes, palpation of the abdomen and abdominal organs, auscultation of the heart and lungs with a stethoscope, assessment of gait and the musculoskeletal system, and assessment of other organ systems and body functions as warranted and allowed. Depending on your pet’s age and medical history, lab work may be necessary to more fully understand their health. And depending on their age and lifestyle, we will discuss which vaccines are important and why. We pride ourselves on working with you for the health of your pet, so any tests or procedures will be decided on in collaboration with you.


Cute little ginger kitten is sleeping in soft blanket on wooden floor
One of the most cost effective ways to prevent serious infectious disease is through vaccination. There are many vaccines available these days, but we only carry and recommend vaccines that are proven safe and effective, and that provide protection relevant to the area we live. Vaccinations can be broken down into “core” and “non-core” vaccines. Core vaccines are those that are important, safe, and effective, and that should be given to all pets unless there is a medical contra-indication. We do not force these vaccines on you, but we will present the rational for recommending them and of course we will answer any questions you may have related to them. We follow recommendation from the CDC, the American Animal Hospital Association, and the American Veterinary Medical Association when it comes to appropriate intervals between vaccinations. And where appropriate, we can even offer vaccine titers to see if your pet may qualify for a longer interval between vaccinations.

Core vaccines for dogs include:
  • Rabies
  • Canine Distemper
  • Canine Hepatitis
  • Canine Parvovirus
Core vaccines for cats are:
  • Rabies
  • FVRCP (Herpes, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia)
Non-core vaccines are important and appropriate for some dogs and some cats, depending on their age and lifestyle. How much time are they indoor, outdoor, in boarding kennels, in dog parks, hiking and camping, etc.

Non-core vaccines that might be appropriate for your dog include:
  • Leptospirosis
  • Canine Bordetella
Non-core vaccines that might be appropriate for your cat include:
  • Feline Leukemia
Remember that your pet ages much faster than you do, which means that problems can also emerge must faster as well. For this, and many other reasons, pet care with wellness at the core is the way to safeguard your pet’s health and well-being. Our Fairfax veterinarian looks forward to being your partner in superlative pet care for your beloved companion. Call us today at (415) 454-8204 to discuss pet wellness and to request an appointment!