Heartworm Prevention Tips: National Heartworm Awareness Month
April is National Heartworm Awareness Month. With summer and mosquito season on the horizon, there's never been a better time to improve your knowledge of this devastating illness and discover how you can protect your furry friend. Here at PetNest Animal Hospital, our compassionate veterinarians provide effective heartworm prevention products near McKinney and can help you give your pup the healthy, disease-free life they deserve. Keep scrolling to learn more.
Heartworm Disease in Dogs
Heartworm disease occurs when an infected mosquito bites a dog or another animal. Once inside a suitable host, the worms reach up to 12 inches in length and reside in the heart, blood vessels, and lungs, resulting in irreversible damage. When left untreated, the parasites grow and multiply continually, which leads to further complications, such as poor health and, in many situations, premature death.
Heartworm disease causes several symptoms, including:
- Persistent cough
- Fatigue after even light exercise
- Weight loss
- Reduced appetite
- Bloated abdomen
- Light-colored gums
- Labored breathing or shortness of breath
Protecting Your Dog from Heartworm
Heartworm disease is notoriously difficult to treat and causes irreversible organ damage. Preventing the disease is a much better option than attempting to treat it. Heartworm preventatives come in numerous forms, such as injectable medications, chewable pills, and even topicals.
According to the American Heartworm Society, all dogs should remain on heartworm preventatives year-round, even when mosquitos aren't prevalent. All dogs need annual heartworm testing, too, even if they are on a preventative medication. While preventatives are extremely effective, it’s still possible for a dog to become infected with heartworm disease. Having your dog tested every year gives their veterinarian to detect and begin treatment for infections in their early stages when they are most treatable.
Effective Heartworm Prevention near McKinney
Choose PetNest Animal Hospital for heartworm prevention near McKinney. Our veterinarians provide heartworm screening and will help you figure out what medication is most suitable for your beloved pet. With our help, they'll enjoy a long, healthy, and happy life free from harmful parasites. Call now to schedule an appointment for your furry friend.
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