How many times have you been to the Vet and they always ask if your pet is on heart worm prevention? Right? Well, here are some facts why your pet (especially dogs) should at least be on prevention during the summer months. But, the fact of the matter is it would be best for your pet to be on prevention year round.
Here Are The Vital Facts:
What Exactly Is Heartworm Disease?
- Adult worms release their young, called microfilariae, into an animal’s bloodstream.
- A mosquito bites the infected animal.
- Mosquitoes that have become infected transmit it by biting your pet.
- It takes up to 6 months for the
(young microfilariae ) to mature into adult worms. heartworms
- For dog's- the maturing young and adult worms inhabit the bloodstream, working their way to your pet's heart. The worms can live up to 7 years in your pet!
- For cats- the maturing young and adult worms fester in the blood stream and heart. They can live up to 3 years!
Where Is Heartworm Found In The U.S.?
- Found in all 50 states.
- Most cases come from the southern part of the country.
- Where ever mosquitoes are - there is heart worm disease.
Signs of Heartworm Disease In Dogs:
- May not show signs of the disease unless the dog is heavily infected.
- Mild persistent cough
- Reluctant to move or exercise
- Fatigue after moderate exercise
- Reduced appetite and weight loss.
Signs of Heartworm Disease In Cats:
- May exhibit signs that are very non-specific, mimicking several other feline diseases.
- Difficult or rapid breathing
- Lethargy and weight loss.
- Sometimes feline asthma or allergic bronchitis can be mistaken for Heartworm Associated Respiratory Disease (HARD)
For dogs it is always better to have them on prevention year round instead of treating the disease. Treatment for the disease is possible for dogs, but it is a long
One reason why your Veterinarian suggests your pet be on prevention year round is because it helps to prevent other worms--- such as hookworms and roundworms, which your pet can pick up anywhere.
For more information on both dog and cat heart worm disease, including how it’s diagnosed, treated and preventions, please visit