Do you find that you get confused when your vet talks about your cat or dog? Do you find yourself too anxious to ask questions, worried you’ll sound stupid? That’s okay because we’re going to share with you some of the common vet terms and what they actually mean. Let’s go!
An abscess is a collection of pus that builds up under the skin. It is typically in an area where your pet has a wound. The pus builds up because of the infection that exists because of bacteria getting into the wound.
You may have heard the word benign used to mean that someone does not have cancer. However, this isn’t the literal meaning of the term. A benign growth is simply a mild illness that will respond to treatment and grow more slowly than a malignant growth.
When the person at your vet clinic says that they need to do blood work, what they mean is they are going to take a sample of blood to diagnose what is causing your pet to be ill.
When you hear the term cryptorchid, it means that your dog has a testicle that is undescended. It is a genetic trait and often means the dog should not breed. Most vets recommend neutering, but it may be more expensive than a traditional procedure.
Hyper is a prefix used for illnesses such as hyperthyroid or hypertension. The prefix means an excess or above the normal range. That means your dog, if he has hypertension, has higher blood pressure than they should.
The opposite prefix to hyper is hypo, and it means having too little of something. So if your dog has hypotension, in that case it means that their blood pressure is too low.
Unlike the benign tumor or growth mentioned above, a malignant growth is one that is severe, resistant to any treatment, and often fatal. It’s a word often associated with cancers, but that is not the entirety of what it means.
When the staff from your favorite vet clinic mention titer, they are referring to the number of antibodies in your pet’s blood. Sometimes, this team can be used to refer to how much antigen is in a vaccine. If your doggie daycare asks if your dog has recently had a titer, now you know what to answer.