What is heartworm?
Heartworm infection is a serious and potentially fatal disease in pets. It is spread by mosquitoes, making it of particular concern in insect-ridden Louisiana. Heartworms can grow up to a foot in length. The worms live in the heart, lungs & blood vessels of infected pets, causing lung disease, heart failure, organ damage. If left untreated, heartworm is fatal.
How does my pet get heartworms?
Adult heartworms produce baby worms that circulate in the bloodstream of the infected animal. When a mosquito bites this animal, it picks up the baby worms. WHen the mosquito bites another animal, the worms enter through the bite wound. Heartworms can grow and live for 5 - 7 years in dogs and 3 years in cats.
What can I do to protect my pet from heartworms?
Thankfully, heartworm disease is preventable! Dogs should be tested before starting preventative treatment, and on yearly basis after that. Prevention is the safest and most cost-effective option. Treatment is available for dogs who become infected, although it can be costly and lengthy. Cats should be tested before starting prevention and re-tested as the veterinarian deems appropriate. There is NO treatment in cats, so prevention is critical and the only means of protection.
Melton Veterinary Hospital has safe, effective products available that cater to you and your pet's lifestyle and budget. They must be administered year-round to protect your pet.
Keep your pets safe from this deadly but preventable disease!
Schedule an appointment for heartworm testing and to discuss the best prevention options for your pets.