Heartworm Disease and Testing

Heartworm disease is a parasitic worm located in the hearts of dogs and cats. It is spread by mosquitoes and can affect our pets anywhere. The disease has spread to every corner of the U.S. and hundreds of thousands of cases are reported every year. Heartworm disease can be prevented by administering an effective heartworm preventive, like Heartgard, year-round.

In addition to prevention, we also recommend testing our canine patients at least every 12 months for heartworm infection.  The test that we run also screens for three common tick borne diseases; Ehrlichia, Anaplasma, and Lyme disease.

Testing of cats varies with each individual case, but is often recommended in cases of sporadic heartworm prevention, no heartworm prevention, or a change in type of heartworm prevention.

Heartworm disease and treatment can be very traumatic to a pet.  While pets undergo treatments they must be kenneled almost all the time.  Any activity can lead to serious complications and could even be fatal.  A trip to Carver Lake Veterinary Center for a heartworm test and a dose of Heartgard requires only 3 drops of blood and about 10 - 15 minutes of time. 

Treatment of heartworm disease is also quite expensive.  The cost for heartworm treatment in a medium sized dog could run nearly $1000 - for that same amount of money you could give your pet year-round prevention and annual testing for over 6 years!!  

Prevention of Heartworm disease is easy and affordable.  Give your pet the care it deserves and avoid the costly and traumatic ordeal of heartworm treatment.

For more information on heartworm disease and other parasites please visit the Companion Animal Parasite Council.
 


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