Heartworms are a potentially deadly condition that is caused by mosquitoes. In the United States, mosquitoes are found in every state. In some states, mosquitoes are present year-round. While heartworm prevention is best, there are cases where pets require heartworm treatment. At Crestwood Court Veterinary Clinic, we have offered heartworm prevention and heartworm treatment services to residents of Vancouver, WA for many years.
How Do Pets Get Heartworms?
When a mosquito bites a dog or cat that already has heartworms, it can transfer the parasite to other animals. Adult heartworms have microfilariae, which the mosquito sucks out of the blood of the first infected pet. Then the microfilariae mature into adult heartworms when the mosquito bites another pet. The cycle continues in this manner. All it takes is one bite from an infected mosquito to transfer heartworm larvae into your pet's heart and pulmonary vessels. Eventually, these parasites will make your pet very sick and can be fatal if left untreated.
Testing Your Dog or Cat for Heartworms
It's always a good idea to take your newly adopted pet to the veterinarian as soon as you get it. Our veterinary clinic will perform an exam and check for any type of parasites including heartworms. Testing for heartworms is simple. If your pet is determined to be suffering from heartworm infestation, our veterinarian will discuss a treatment program with you.
What Kinds of Heartworm Preventatives Are There?
Preventing heartworms is simple. You may use a chewable monthly pill or a topical spot treatment. There is also an injectable preventative medication that lasts between 6 and 12 months. Some preventatives are all-inclusive and they will protect your pet from heartworms, fleas, mites, ticks, and intestinal worms all in one product. It's best to make sure your pet has a heartworm preventative to cover it all year round. Even inside pets should receive heartworm prevention medication as it only takes a moment to be infected.
Schedule an Appointment with Our Veterinarian in Vancouver, WA
If you are looking for heartworm prevention or heartworm treatment in Vancouver, WA, the pet care professionals at Companion Court Veterinary Clinic are ready to assist you. Call us today at (360) 254-8811 for more information or to schedule an appointment with our veterinarian.