Heartworms are internal parasites that can live and reproduce inside your pet’s heart, lungs and blood vessels. If left untreated, a heartworm infestation can cause irreversible blockages and damage to your pet’s organs. Did you know that up to 250 heartworms can live inside a single dog?! With these parasites, prevention is key. Call us at 902.863.3157 to learn more about how to protect your furry family member.
How can pets get heartworm?
Heartworm is spread from just one bite of an infected mosquito. The heartworm eggs or pupae are burrowed inside your pet and that is where they grow into adult heartworm. Once grown, they can also reproduce and release eggs into your pet’s bloodstream. The spread continues If your pet is bitten by a mosquito and that mosquito bites another animal.
What are the symptoms of heartworm?
At first, or if your pet has a low heartworm count, there will be virtually no symptoms! This is why regular checkups are absolutely essential. Mild cases or early stages of heartworm can only be detected through in-clinic testing. Excess coughing, weight loss, swollen stomach, fatigue, difficulty breathing and walking are some of the most common signs that you may notice once the heartworm infestation progresses.
What are the treatment options for heartworm?
With heartworm, we say prevention, prevention, prevention! Regular deworming medications can save you and your pet from the harmful effects of heartworm and other parasites. Once infected, treatments including manual removals, injections and drastic lifestyle changes may be prescribed over the span of many months.