Preventive Screening

    Tests Determine If Your Animal Is Healthy; Prevention Helps Them Stay That Way

    SNAP wellness clinics offer several tests that can help establish whether your animal is affected by various parasites or diseases and services and products that can help prevent them. This page provides a summary of these tests and preventative products. Current prices can be found on the services and fees page for the wellness clinic nearest you.

    Heartworm Testing

    Heartworms are exactly what the name suggests. They invade and damage your animal's heart. They can also affect the lungs. Heartworms can result in permanent heart and lung damage--or even be fatal--if not treated early enough. Heartworms are carried by mosquitoes, and since mosquitoes sometimes get in the home, even indoor dogs and cats are at risk. SNAP offers canine heartworm testing that can determine whether your dog is currently infected with heartworms. A dog cannot be placed on heartworm preventative if it is already infected. The same is not true for cats, and the preventative may help them recover from infection. Feline heartworm testing is not available. Heartworm infection is epidemic in the areas SNAP serves, so if your pets are heartworm negative (not infected), we strongly urge you to start them on heartworm preventative immediately. If your animal is heartworm positive (infected), you may be referred to a full-service veterinary clinic for treatment. Several brands of heartworm prevention for dogs and cats are available at SNAP wellness clinics. Learn more about heartworms on our Internal Parasites webpage.

    Feline Leukemia/Feline Immunodeficiency Virus Combo Test

    Feline Leukemia (FeLV) and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) test determines whether a cat has been exposed to either of these diseases. Both diseases affect the animal's immune system and are incurable. They are common in unvaccinated cats that live outdoors, and can be transmitted through contact with their blood, saliva, or other bodily fluids. Feline Leukemia can be prevented via vaccine which SNAP can provide. FIV is similar to HIV Unfortunately there is currently no vaccine that is effective against Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, but there are measures you can take to help prolong and improve the animal's quality of life. You may want to consider keeping your cat indoors at all times to help it avoid contact with the Feline Leukemia Virus and the Feline Immunodeficiency Virus.

    Fecal Flotation

    A fecal flotation test is used to detect the presence of various intestinal parasites including worms and microscopic cysts. The test requires a sample of the animal's stool which is filtered and viewed under a microscope. A SNAP wellness veterinarian may recommend a fecal flotation test if intestinal parasites are suspected. Learn more about intestinal parasites and their treatment on our Deworming page.

    Skin Scraping

    Skin scraping is performed to detect the presence of parasites such as the mites responsible for the skin disease known as mange. It can help determine whether a skin irritation is the result of a parasite or perhaps the result of an environmental allergy instead. If your furry friend is scratching, licking, or biting his or her body more than usual--or has a rash, hair loss, or skin lesions--a SNAP veterinarian may recommend a skin scraping test to help establish the cause.

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