We’ve had our puppy on heartworm preventatives for about a year. The cost is starting to weigh heavily on our wallet and I was curious to know if our dog really needs heartworm prevention year-round. We haven’t seen a mosquito in months!
Questioning Heartworm Meds in The Heights
Dear Questioning Heartworm Meds,
With Valentine’s Day upon us, we’re seeing cute, glittery hearts festooning every surface; but do you want to know what’s not as cute? A canine heart infested with heartworms. According to the American Heartworm Society, (yes, there is such a thing), “Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease in pets in the United States and many other parts of the world. It is caused by foot-long worms (heartworms) that live in the heart, lungs and associated blood vessels of affected pets, causing severe lung disease, heart failure and damage to other organs in the body.”
Heartworms are most commonly spread via mosquitoes. The American Heartworm Society reminds us that, “Mosquitoes blown great distances by the wind and the relocation of infected pets to previously uninfected areas also contribute to the spread of heartworm disease–this happened following Hurricane Katrina when 250,000 pets, many of them infected with heartworms, were adopted and shipped throughout the country.”
The thing is, if your dog gets heartworms (especially if caught early) it is treatable, but not without great expense to your dog’s health and to your wallet. On average, the cost to treat heartworm disease is anywhere from $400 to $1,000. This is why prevention is the key to heartworm disease.
Indeed, heartworm preventatives can be costly and are not always fun for your dog to take, but heartworm disease is a preventable disease in south Texas. One of the responsibilities of being a pet owner is to provide the best care that you can and preventing such a horrible disease is your obligation.
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Pets of the Week
Meet Penny and Rusty. Penny (female, copper-colored) and Rusty (male, darker-colored) are both lab mixes who were found together right before one of the hard freezes that Houston experienced last month. These BFF’s are only about 10 months old, happy, healthy and very mild-mannered. They’d love to go to a home together if possible to keep each other company–talk about a package deal! To learn more, visit www.thelovemolly fund.org.