Headsup: Heartworm Prevention Time

With the rainy season winding down, the mosquito breeding season is ramping up.  Why care about mosquitoes?  Human diseases aside, as a pet owner—whether dog or cat—you care about mosquitos because mosquitos transmit heartworm and other diseases to our pets.  

Did you know that a tiny amount of water, as small as a bottle cap, is sufficient for mosquitos to breed.  We all know to get rid of any standing water in the yard, but nobody can catch it all.

Heartworm prevention is crucial, and now is the best time to make sure heartworm prevention medication for your animal is up to date and administered.  To reiterate from our blog post last spring:

If you are a new pet owner, it's useful to understand why all this heartworm discussion is so important. Put simply, heartworm can be a matter of life and death, and prevention is absolutely key. If you have a few minutes, you might want to read our information page on Heartworm, an earlier blog post or both.

Cats cannot be treated for heartworm infection, which makes the strongest case possible for prevention. Indoor cats and indoor dogs are still at risk. Dogs can be treated, but by the time the mosquito bite turns into symptoms, adult worms have developed and populated blood vessels near the heart and non-trivial damage has been done. Plus, treatment is expensive, not without risks and difficulties, and by no means guaranteed. 

Heartworm prevention medication comes with essentially no risk to your pet. If your pet's been seen in the last year, reach out to us and we can refill the prescription.  If you are unsure that your pet received every dose on schedule, testing may be indicated.  If your pet has not been seen by their veterinarian in the last year, please be advised that we're scheduling several weeks out; now is the time to get your appointment on the books so the heartworm prevention medication can begin by this summer.