One of the conditions that your vet looks for at each checkup is heartworm
disease. This devastating illness is easily prevented, but not all pet
owners are aware of the risk of heartworm disease. Here is an overview
of what your
pet's vet wants you to know about heartworm disease:
Cats and Dogs Get It
While heartworm disease is often seen in dogs, it occurs regularly in cats
too. Pets in all fifty states can get heartworm disease, though it is
most common in the Southeast and along the Mississippi River. These areas
are humid and moist, making them a perfect breeding ground for the transmitters
of heartworm disease: mosquitoes.
Prevention Is Simple
Your vet can provide many prevention options for your cat or dog. Oral
medications, topical applications, and injections are all available. Some
require monthly doses, and others have longer durations. It is also important
to keep other internal parasites, such as ringworms, in check to preserve
your pet's overall wellbeing.
Treatment Is Difficult
heartworm disease is risky. The parasites must be killed without hurting the animal. Hospitalization
is often necessary, as are many doses of injected medication. Your cat
or dog must be confined with limited exercise while he or she recovers.
The treatment process is long and can be quite costly, so prevention is
crucial. If you suspect your pet has heartworm disease, don't wait
to see the vet for treatment.
Pet Owners Should Know the Symptoms
You may not realize your pet has heartworm disease at first. Your dog or
cat may be tired, lethargic, and show less interest in food. As the disease
progresses, your pet may be unwilling to exercise, lose weight, cough,
and seem generally ill. As soon as you notice a change in your pet, bring
him or her to your veterinary practice for an exam. The sooner heartworms
are detected, the sooner treatment can begin to restore your pet to full health.
In Dallas, bring your cat or dog to Chastain Veterinary Medical Group.
Our trained staff can examine your animal and begin
heartworm prevention or treatment as soon as possible. Let us help you give your pet the very best. Call
us at (972) 239-1309 for an appointment today.