What You Need to Know
One lone, infected mosquito is all that’s needed to transmit heartworm disease to your pet. Heartworm disease is the infestation of the heart by a parasite known as Dirofilaria immitis. These worms can grow to about 12 inches long and usually live in the heart, lungs and associated blood vessels. Heart failure, lung disease and other organ damage can occur if this disease is left untreated.
Lyme Disease, Ehrlichiosis and Anaplasmosis
Ticks come in a variety of species, and they can pass on a variety of diseases. These include Lyme disease, an infection caused by a type of bacteria that causes joint inflammation, lameness and fever symptoms. Ehrlichiosis targets the white blood cells and has an acute stage, a subclinical stage and a chronic stage, the latter being the most severe. Initial symptoms include decreased appetite, weakness, and limb edema. More serious cases can involve fever, kidney failure, anemia and paralysis. Anaplasmosis can result in lameness, joint pain and fever.
Flea Allergic Dermatitis and Tapeworm
Fleas can cause your pet to itch and scratch, but their bite can also trigger an allergic reaction. This can lead to skin issues that will need to be treated promptly. Additionally, your pet may accidentally ingest tapeworm eggs if they happen to swallow an adult flea. Tapeworms lodge in the intestines and deprive your pet of nutrients.
Preventatives We Offer
To ensure that your pet stays parasite-free, we offer the following preventatives at our hospital:
- Tri-Heart Plus – heartworm preventative; also treats common intestinal parasites such as roundworms and hookworms
- Bravecto – a flea and tick preventative; a single dose can remain effective for up to 3 months