Heartworms are parasites that can live inside your pet. The disease is mostly seen in canine friends, though it is possible for cats to get infected. Mosquitoes carrying larvae bite your pet and pass on the worms. The worms mature inside your pet and can grow up to foot long, reaching important organs like the heart and major blood vessels. The infection causes major health issues for your pet and can be fatal if left untreated.
Can my pet get heartworms from infected pets?
No. The worms are transmitted by an infected mosquito. Only when that mosquito bites your pet can they get heartworms.
What are signs that my pet has heartworms?
During the early stages of infection you may not see any signs. As the worms multiply and reach vital organs, then the signs may start to appear. This is why regular testing is very important to detect them before the disease is advanced. If you notice any of these signs please contact your veterinarian immediately for a diagnosis. Here are some signs of heartworms in your pet:
- Persistent dry cough
- Swollen belly
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
How can I protect my pet from heartworm?
Protecting your pet from heartworm is very important as the disease can be expensive to treat and even worse it can cause death. Prevention is the best form of protection. Your loyal companion should be protected against heartworms every 6 to 12 months. Pets should also be tested regularly to detect the presence of the worms as late or missed doses can leave them susceptible.
If your pet is diagnosed with heartworms, our team will prescribe medications to rid them of the parasites. The medication may be taken orally or topically.