William R. Pritchard Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital

Photo: Wellness Program Image

Wellness Service

The goal of the Companion Exotic Animal Wellness Service is to promote and protect the health and well-being of our exotic animal pets. Through client education and compassionate patient care, we work to promote balanced physical and mental health for the exotic animal pet at all stages of life.  

We understand the unique medical and husbandry needs of exotic companion animals and we strive to work closely with our clients to help them gain up-to-date information and medical care best suited to their individual pet. 

Our mission also includes the clinical education of senior veterinary students for the specialized care of exotic animal patients. Our service allows you to experience the education process while faculty and resident veterinarians provide care to your pet while instructing students. The faculty and resident veterinarians will always be the primary clinicians caring for your pet. You will be able to witness and involve yourself in the learning process as we examine your pet in your presence. Many of our clients tell us how much they learn by participating in this experience.

Why are “Wellness” examinations important for my exotic pet?

Pet owners easily recognize signs of illness for cats and dogs, but these clues can be elusive in exotic animals. Because many exotic pets mask signs of illness completely or show only subtle signs until very late in the disease, prompt attention to even seemingly minor changes or concerns is essential. Additionally, due to the rapid metabolism of many exotic species, diseases often progress faster and so problems must be addressed far more quickly than they would be for a dog or cat. Routine wellness exams and basic diagnostic testing are the foundations to identifying health concerns before illness occurs.

The Wellness Service encourages at least annual physical examinations for all exotic pets, and “new pet” examinations as soon as you acquire your new pet. 

In addition to annual routine health care, proper husbandry is another keystone for our healthy exotic companions. As is true with other species, preventative medicine for exotics starts at home with healthy lifestyles.  Many exotic species have very specific dietary and housing requirements, and poor health and significant diseases can result when they aren’t met. 

A major part of our mission is to provide the best information possible to help you learn how to provide the healthiest lifestyle possible for your exotic pet. Our goals are to enhance preventive health care by helping improve your understanding of animal husbandry, nutritional needs and preventative medicine such as vaccines.