Heartworm Awareness at The Veterinary Clinic in Brunswick Maine
Heartworm is a potentially life-threatening disease that affects dogs, cats, and ferrets, as well as many wild animals. While that sounds scary (and for good reason), the great news is that heartworm can be prevented, and with early diagnosis, it can often be successfully treated. At the Brunswick Veterinary Clinic, we aim to empower you with the knowledge to keep your pet safe.
Heartworm Symptoms in Pets
Heartworm is like it sounds – an infection of worms in an animal’s heart. Spread by mosquito bites, heartworms move through the body as they grow into adults, damaging blood vessels and the heart’s ability to pump properly. Left untreated, heartworms cause heart disease and lung disease that can result in death. Heartworm symptoms in pets often do not appear until the disease has progressed. Tragically, sudden death can occur in cats.
Early Heartworm Symptoms:
- Decreased appetite
- Weight loss
- Swollen belly
- Heart failure
Heartworm Medication for Prevention
Given on a consistent schedule, heartworm medication for prevention is extremely effective. Heartworm medication can easily be given as a monthly oral pill or chewable tablet. Ideally, cats and dogs should start by 8 weeks of age Pets 6 months and older need a heartworm test. Year-round heartworm medication is a small price to pay in comparison to the dangers of disease and the heartworm treatment cost.
Heartworm Treatment in Brunswick Maine
If your pet tests positive, mandatory rest is required during heartworm treatment. In dogs, we can administer treatment that kills the worms. No such treatment exists for cats; however, we can provide medications to counter the effects of the disease. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary. Heartworm treatment cost varies depending on the severity of the disease.
Contact Us Today
Don’t let heartworm harm your pet! Call us (207) 729-3412 for a wellness exam, where we can test for heartworm, update vaccines and provide lab diagnostics, as necessary.