Wellness Visits

We recommend your pet have a thorough physical examination every 6 months. When we know you and your pets, we can better personalize and customize our recommendations for their optimal health. We will discuss behavior, dental health, aging/geriatrics, heartworm prevention, parasite preventatives, nutrition, and any concern you may have about your pet’s health.


Our vaccination philosophy - We offer routine vaccines for cats and dogs. Our doctors determine which vaccinations are needed based on AVMA guidelines on recommended small animal immunization protocols for living in our region. Environment, and can cause a permanent carrier state if that animal survives the illness, resulting in continued spread of the disease. The more animals that are immunized means less disease, period.


“You are what you eat.” We are all familiar with this adage. The same concept rings true for your pet as well. These days, we are bombarded by pet food advertisements that all claim to be the best. Dry, canned, home-cooked, raw… how do we choose? There are pros and cons to every one of these options. Interested in a dietary consult? Call today for an appointment! Our doctors will happily discuss with you which diets may be most beneficial for your pets.

What can we do to extend our pets’ lifespans?

Part of the answer lies in how optimized their health has been up to this point. Good nutrition, parasite prevention, disease prevention, and exercise all play major roles in current and future health. For example, it is well known that periodontal disease and obesity both reduce life expectancy. That being said, with age comes degeneration, no matter how healthy an animal is, which leads to conditions like kidney failure, senility, and osteoarthritis, to name a few. With degeneration comes malaise, depression, lethargy, and sometimes pain. We may look at our aging pet and think that he/she is “just getting old,” but many times they are living with discomfort, confusion, or other symptom that prevents or reduces their enjoyment of life. The beautiful thing is that we can help alleviate these symptoms, especially if we take action at early onset. What can be challenging is noticing a change in our pet’s behavior that clues us in to a change in their well-being. Early signs can be subtle: the first sign of kidney disease is increased water consumption and urine output; the first sign of osteoarthritis is a decreased activity level to avoid using the uncomfortable limb; the first sign of senility may be increased sleep, or occasional break in house-training. We may not realize that something is amiss because these signs can develop gradually. This is why we want to discuss with you any new behavior from your pet. Sometimes, a medical condition is first diagnosed on routine bloodwork. Starting at the onset of the senior years, we recommend annual screening lab tests that can help us to find medical conditions when they first develop, when they are most easily and successfully managed. Success is defined by prevention or reduction of symptoms so that the pet experiences good quality of life for as long as he/she is able. Every year we have new products and medications that we can use in our arsenal against aging; let us help your pet live optimally!


River Road Veterinary Hospital is proud to offer acupuncture treatments by Dr. Courtney Wheeler, DVM, cVMA (certified in Veterinary Medical Acupuncture). Acupuncture can be used in conjunction with other therapies, or on its own, to treat a variety of medical conditions including pain and inflammation, nausea, decreased appetite and other gastrointestinal issues, skin conditions, and respiratory problems.

Give us a call at 504-838-0288 or make an appointment at RiverRoadVets.com, to learn if acupuncture might be a beneficial treatment for your pet!