Heartworm Disease

Now that spring has sprung so will the mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are not just a nuisance but also are potential carriers of a deadly disease – Heartworm. Mosquitoes can transfer mosquitomicroscopic larvae from infected dogs to healthy dogs with one bite. Larvae can then develop into adult worms that live within the heart and blood vessels. Once established, heartworm can cause serious injury to the heart, lungs and can sometimes lead to death.

Fortunately, heartworm is a preventable disease. Prevention consists of giving a once a month beef flavored medicated treat starting May 1 to October 1. This medication is also effective against intestinal parasites such as round worms and hookworms. Before a preventive program is started, a low cost blood test is performed to make sure you dog does not have an underlying heartworm infection. The blood test is done in clinic to provide quick results for your convenience.

No treatment is 100% effective so testing is recommended every year in endemic areas (Manitoba, eastern Canada and all of the United States) and every three years in non-endemic areas. Please call us with any questions or to schedule an appointment for your dogs heartworm test and summer supply of heartworm prevention.

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