Heartworm Disease

Heartworm treatment

Heartworm disease affects both dogs and cats. Prevention of the disease is always preferred, especially in cats as there is no currative treatment available for cats if they get heartworm disease.
Heartworm is a parasitic worm that is transmitted from host to host by the bite of a mosquito. The small, thread-like worm resides in the pulmonary (lung) artery and, in severe cases, may migrate to the right side of the heart. Naturally sedentary pets or those in the early stages may show no signs of the disease. Dogs or cats that are active or have a heavy infection will cough during exercise or become exercise intolerant. As the disease progresses, the pet may lose weight, cough up blood and finally go into heart failure.

We recommend that your dog be tested annually for heartworm. Diagnosis of heartworm diseaseFind out more about our Heart worm treatment is made through a blood test performed right at our clinic. Many times you will know the results of the test before your appointment is over!

Pets testing negative for heartworm disease are started on the heartworm preventive, Heartgard ® (for dogs and cats) or ProHeart 6. These drugs contains the drug moxidectin. When given every 30 days the ivermectin/moxidectin kills any larvae introduced into the pet via a mosquito bite.

Puppies should be started on Heartgard Plus ® at 8 weeks of age and remain on the medication life long. Puppies older than six months of age should be tested for heartworms before starting heartworm prevention. Administering a heartworm preventive to a pet that is infected with adult heartworms may be harmful or even deadly. Heartgard and ProHeart 6  do not kill the adult heartworms, additional treatment is needed for heartworm positive ahimals.