This month we chose to do an informational post vs. a pet/patient case of the month.
We are now in what most refer to as “heartworm season”. This is just one of the myths about heartworms- There is no definitive season and the American Heartworm Society recommends year-round prevention for ALL pets. Continue reading to learn more about heartworm disease and the preventives we offer here at Post Pet Hospital.
Heartworms are a blood-borne parasite. The parasite requires the mosquito as an intermediate host before it can continue its lifecycle in a dog, cat or ferret. It takes just ONE bite from a mosquito infected with heartworm larvae to jeopardize your pet’s health and welfare.
Myth: Indoor pets are not at risk for heartworm disease- mosquitoes can get inside the home and transmit heartworm disease. One quarter of cats diagnosed with heartworms are considered indoor cats. Heartworm disease is a devastating, potentially fatal disease impacting the heart, lungs and pulmonary blood vessels. In dogs symptoms might start with a soft, dry cough, shortness of breath and a decrease in stamina. Cats with heartworm disease typically develop lung disease, which can mimic asthma and cause respiratory distress, chronic coughing and vomiting. The death of one adult heartworm in a cat can cause the cat to die abruptly.
Myth: Heartworms are contagious- Heartworms cannot be spread like a cold or the flu. Heartworms are spread directly from the bite of an infected mosquito that has bitten an infected dog, coyote, or fox.
Myth: Annual heartworm tests are not necessary if your pet is on preventives- in addition to a year-round heartworm prevention regimen the American Heartworm Society recommends annual testing to ensure the prevention program is working. Although heartworm preventives are highly effective, nothing works 100% of the time.
Myth: Heartworm Prevention is Costly and Inconvenient- It is less expensive to prevent heartworm disease than it is to treat it. Prevention costs less per month than pizza delivery. Post Pet Hospital offers a variety of preventives. We carry Interceptor Plus an oral monthly preventive, Revolution a topical monthly preventive and ProHeart an injectable prevention that lasts 6 months. Other brands or types of heartworm prevention are available through our online pharmacy. All our preventives can be purchased by the month, but it is more cost effective monthly if you buy a 6 or12-month supply per pet.
Post Pet Hospital has already had our first Heartworm positive patient this year. Please call in to schedule your pets’ annual heartworm test and preventive today!
Products we carry to prevent Heartwom Disease
Proheart 6 - injection Revolution - topical Interceptor Plus - Chewable Tab