What is a fecal exam?
During a fecal exam, a microscopic examination of your pet's feces is completed at your vet's office. These annual fecals help your veterinarian identify and treat any infections that may compromise your pet's health, and even the health of people living in your household.
What can be detected during fecals?
When performing fecal exams, the veterinarian will search for any signs of parasites such as roundworms or hookworms. These parasites can result in pets feeling uncomfortable and irritable and may lead to many more serious issues. Numerous parasites may even be transmitted to people.
Because intestinal parasites hide from view by living in your pet's gastrointestinal tract, fecals are the best way to detect whether any are present.
How do I prepare for my pet's fecal?
Get a fresh stool sample and bring it to your vet's office the same day, ideally within 4 to 6 hours for the most accurate results.
It's imperative not to allow the stool sample to dehydrate or dry out, since many of the potential parasites will be killed, which in turn can mask their presence.
How often does my pet need a fecal?
You should have your pet tested for internal parasites at least annually. Puppies and animals with gastrointestinal issues may need fecal exams more frequently. Ask your vet how often you should bring your pet's stool sample in for a fecal.