Here is an easy way to treat and prevent heartworm in dogs

The health of your canine toothed pal is essential. Dirofilaria Immitis is also known as heartworm disease in dogs is a concerning and fatal illness. As a pet parent, your dog relies on you to keep them healthy and parasite-free. 

Learn in detail about heartworm disease and measures you can take to prevent it

How are Heartworms Transmitted?

Heartworm is a parasitic worm commonly living in the heart and lungs of your pet. An infected mosquito bite is the cause of this disease. It takes approximately six months for the larvae to mature after being deposited under your dog’s skin. 

  • Upon maturity, the heartworms can live up to 7 years in a dog. These worms will reproduce, leading to microfilariae. The worms are drawn by the mosquito when it feeds on your pet, causing the cycle to repeat itself. 

How Common are Heartworms? 

Yes, despite the preventative options and the available treatments, heartworms are common and still a big deal. What is understood is that where there are mosquitoes, there prevails a risk for heartworm. 

  • Researchers and experts are still trying ways in which they can find more about this illness in pets. As of now, prevention is the best medicine to control heartworm in dogs. 

Can humans get heartworms? 

The answer is: rare! It’s perfectly alright to be concerned about whether or not you can get heartworms from your dog. Heartworms are transmitted only through the bite of a mosquito. 

  • According to CBC, the human immune system is better equipped to handle this disease, as it detects the worms in their immature state. However, out of the common, taking precautions is always mindful.

Heartworm Prevention for Dogs 

As a worried pet owner, the good news is that there are many ways to treat and prevent the disease. But the process is time-consuming, expensive, and can be a little traumatic for your dog. It is best to take action when your pet is six to eight weeks old. Due to low immunity, puppies are at a higher risk. 

  • All told, taking preventive steps is crucial. One effective measure is to get yearly injections but be sure to have them administered by a professional veterinarian.

Another potential preventative step is to take action in the course of the larvae completing its cycle. This is relatively easier and inexpensive. 

prevent heartworm disease in dogs

Symptoms of Heartworms in Dogs 

This is fairly dependent on how bad the infection is your doggy suffering from. The longer the body has been host to the infection, the higher are the chances of it being a severe one. 

  • Another significant indicator of the disease severity is the activity level of your dog. In some cases, your pet might even be asymptomatic.

Dogs with low worm burdens and minimal activity do not display apparent signs of disease. Whilst, dogs with heavy worm burdens, with more activity and longer infection time display obvious signs of the heartworm disease. Some notable signs to look out for are: 

  • Lethargy 
  • Persistent Cough
  • Breathing Difficulty 
  • Weight loss 

That said, while these are the signs of heartworms, they can easily be confused for something else. It is best not to self-diagnose heartworm disease in dogs, instead consult a professional for their expertise.

If you notice any of the above-mentioned symptoms or abnormal behavior, book an appointment with AutumnTrails and Veterinary Centre in Charlottesville, VA.  They will best administer what seems to be the problem and advise you on the best treatment for your pet. 

Alternatively, you can also use Simparica Trio to treat and prevent heartworm in dogs.