Heartworm Disease: Myth vs. Fact

THE BREGMAN VETERINARY GROUP
www.BregmanVetGroup.com

You may have heard about heartworm disease, but do you really know the facts? 

A heartworm is a foot long worm that lives inside the heart, lungs and other blood vessels of a cats and dogs. Although, the effects of a heartworm differ between cats and dogs, these worms can lead to heart failure, lung disease and damage to other organs in both cats and dogs. 

Here are a few common myths you may hear about heartworms:



Myth: Pets only need to be protected from heartworms in the summer.
Fact: It is recommended that heartworm prevention should be year round. Even when mosquitoes are not present and if your pet lives in cold or dry regions.



Myth: Pets with heartworm disease should be separated from other pets.
Fact: Pets who are infected cannot transmit heartworm disease to other pets or people.Pets get heartworm disease by being bit by a mosquito that is carrying a heartworm larvae.



Myth: Puppies are immune to heartworms.
Fact: Any dog can be infected with heartworms if they are bit by a mosquito that is carrying an infected heartworm larvae. That is why it is important to start heartworm prevention as early as possible.



Myth: Indoor cats can’t get heartworms.
Fact: Mosquitos can easily get into your home and wherever there are mosquitoes there is a chance of heartworm disease. Make sure you take the right precautions to protect your cat from heartworm disease.



Even if you are taking the correct precautions you should still watch for signs of heartworms in your pets. In dogs watch for coughing, loss of appetite, weight loss and reluctance to exercise. With cats you should look for the same symptoms as well as vomiting.



To learn more about heartworms check out these articles. If you have any questions or concerns about heartworm disease in your pets please contact our office or visit our website.



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