Preventing heartworm in your pet is essential for the general health of your cat or dog. Heartworm is very difficult to cure and it can become a costly health condition to manage. If left untreated, heartworm can prove fatal to cats and dogs.

Here in this guide about heartworm prevention, you can find out the many reasons why you should think about how to prevent heartworm in your pet.

What is Heartworm?

Heartworm is an infection that caused by a parasite that is spread by mosquitoes. According to Pets WebMD, the heartworm parasite can live in the heart, lungs, and surrounding blood vessels. All it takes is the bite of one infected mosquito to infect your cat or dog.[1]

Heartworm has been reported in all 50 states in the U.S.

Heartworm Prevention

Here is your essential guide on how to prevent your pet being infected with heartworm parasites.

First of all, it’s essential to visit your local vet to get a full check for your dog or cat. The vet will check for signs and symptoms of heartworm before administering any prevention medication.

If your pet is clear of heartworm, you should administer monthly heartworm preventative medication that your vet prescribes. Many vets advise keeping up with the heartworm prevention medication even during the winter months. However, your local vet will advise what is best for your pet.

If your pet is diagnosed with heartworm, the vet will prescribe a course of treatment to get rid of the heartworms. This includes getting bloodwork done, injections, and possibly X-rays. After the treatment has been administered, it’s important to have a follow-up visit to your vet 3-4 months after treatment has started.

Signs of Heartworm

It’s also important to be aware of the common symptoms of heartworm parasites in your pet. The earlier you are able to start treatment, the easier it will be to remove the parasites.

Some of the classic heartworm symptoms are:

  • Lethargic pets that tire easily and cough.
  • Weight loss.
  • Cats may have difficulty in breathing.

If you are in the habit of taking your pet for yearly checkups, your vet will also check for signs of heartworm. This is one of the best ways to look after the health of your pets.

Article sources:
1. Heartworms in dogs by PetsWebMD