Heartworm Disease

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Heartworm Disease

Are you familiar with heartworm disease and the devastating effects it can have on your dog? Many vets don’t push testing because it is not overly common in this area, however it is here. Furry Friends Network has recently had to treat dogs found in this area for Heartworm Disease, and it is a long and expensive process. Additionally, it is extremely hard and dangerous for the dog. Testing is easy – the test is usually done as a 4DX test which tests for
Heartworm/Lyme/Ehrlichia/Anaplasmosis (also incredibly common in this area). A monthly prevention for Heartworm Disease is available as an oral tablet given year round. The preventative is quite inexpensive. The American Heartworm Society provides information on its website including the following article http://www.heartwormsociety.org/article_1141.html:
Preventives
While treatment of canine Heartworm Disease is usually successful, prevention of the disease is much safer and more economical. There are a variety of options for preventing heartworm infection, including daily and monthly tablets and chewables, monthly topicals and a six-month injectable product. These products are extremely effective and when administered properly on a timely schedule, heartworm infection can be prevented.
The American Heartworm Society is now recommending year-round prevention, even in seasonal areas. One reason for this is compliance – to make sure the medicine has been given properly by the pet owner. In addition, most monthly heartworm preventives have activity against intestinal parasites. These parasites – roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms are commonly found in the ground and can infect dogs through their paw pads. Many of these same intestinal parasites that infect dogs can also infect people, with estimated infections occurring in three to six million people every year. So this added benefit of monthly deworming makes great
sense. Before starting a preventive program, all dogs that could possibly be infected with mature heartworms should be tested. Testing should be repeated on an annual basis.
Because Heartworm Disease is so hard on dogs, FFN requires that all dogs in an applicant’s home be tested annually and remain on heartworm prevention. FFN also expects that all dogs adopted from our program receive the same care. We believe keeping dogs safe from heartworm
is good medical preventative care and an ounce of prevention goes a long way!