It is now spring which means that mosquitoes are out in full force. Not only are they annoying, but they also carry a deadly disease called heartworms. The heartworms enter the pet's bloodstream through the mosquito bite, travel around the body and mature, and finally the adult worms take up residence in the major blood vessels between the heart and lungs. These adults living there cause a blockage and inflammation which can lead to heart failure and even death over time. This disease is heartbreaking and the adult heartworm infection is costly to treat. Luckily, heartworms are very easy to prevent! At your pet's annual exam every year we do a heartworm test to make sure they do not already have heartworms. If they do not have them then you will take home a heartworm preventative (chew, pill, or topical) to give them every 30 days. These preventatives are easy to give, affordable, and not only prevent heartworms but also kill intestinal parasites. I always say that besides vaccines, heartworm prevention is one of the most important things we can do for our beloved pets. You can call us to set up an annual exam with a heartworm test. At your appointment we can discuss any questions you may have about making sure your best friend is protected. You can also go to https://heartwormsociety.org/pet-owner-resources
for more information.