Heartworm Awareness Month: Tips For Preventing Heartworm Disease In Your Pup

As pet lovers, we all want to ensure our furry companions stay healthy and happy. However, there are some health risks that can be challenging to detect, and heartworm disease is one of them. That’s why it’s important to raise awareness about heartworm disease, especially during Heartworm Awareness Month.

What Is Heartworm Disease & Who Does It Affect?

According to the American Heartworm Society, the actual number of dogs infected with heartworm disease and those that die from it each year in the US is unknown. However, it is estimated that millions of dogs are at risk of contracting the disease, especially in areas with a high prevalence of mosquitoes, which are the primary carriers of the heartworm parasite.
Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease caused by the Dirofilaria immitis parasite that lives in the heart, lungs, and associated blood vessels of infected animals. It can affect dogs of all ages, breeds, and sizes and is prevalent in all 50 states of the US.

Common Symptoms Of Heartworm In Dogs

The symptoms of heartworm disease can be subtle at first but can progress to become more severe over time. In its early stages, your pet may show no symptoms at all. However, as the disease progresses, you may notice your pet is more tired than usual, coughing, losing weight, and having difficulty breathing. As the disease worsens, your dog may develop a swollen belly, have difficulty exercising, and even worse begin to have seizures.
If you notice any of these symptoms in your pet, it’s crucial to seek veterinary care right away. A veterinarian can perform a blood test to check for the presence of heartworms, and can recommend treatment options if your dog is diagnosed with the disease.

Tips For Prevention & Early Detection of Heartworm In Dogs

The best way to prevent the disease is to keep your dog on regular preventative medication. As a pet owner, you play a critical role in detecting heartworm disease early on. Regular checkups with your veterinarian are essential, as they can detect heartworm disease even before symptoms arise.
Early detection and treatment are crucial for a successful outcome. This can include monthly medication or injections, depending on your vet’s recommendation. Additionally, you should take steps to minimize your pet’s exposure to mosquitoes, such as keeping them indoors during peak mosquito hours and using mosquito repellents. Always keep an eye out for any changes in your pet’s behavior or health, and don’t hesitate to seek veterinary care if you have any concerns.

Disease Prevention & Treatment For Pets In Redondo Beach, California

At Pacific Animal Hospital in Redondo Beach, we are committed to providing the best possible care for your furry family members. Our team of experienced veterinarians and staff can help you develop a customized heartworm prevention plan that’s tailored to your pet’s specific needs. We also offer a variety of other preventive care services, including vaccinations and parasite control, to keep your pet healthy and happy.
Don’t wait until it’s too late – take action now to protect your pet from heartworm disease and other potential health risks. Contact us today to schedule an appointment and learn more about our preventive care services. Together, we can keep your pet healthy and happy for years to come!