Spread by mosquitoes, heartworm disease can be a serious threat for your pet. Fortunately, preventive medications exist to prevent heartworm disease in your beloved companion. Our veterinarians recommend administering preventive medication once-a-month, all year long.
When should I test my dog for heartworms?
Symptoms of heartworm are not always immediately apparent. Therefore, it can be difficult to detect symptoms in your pet. Some dogs may show no signs of the disease while others may exhibit clinical signs, such as mild, persistent cough, reluctance to move or exercise (lethargy), fatigue after only moderate exercise, reduced appetite and/or weight loss.
Cats may exhibit clinical signs that are non-specific, such as vomiting, gagging, difficulty or rapid breathing, lethargy, and weight loss. If your pet is is experiencing these symptoms, pleas call Raymond Animal Hospital at (603) 895-3163 to schedule and appointment.
The timing and frequency of heartworm tests depend on several factors. These include:
- The pet’s age when heartworm prevention was started
- If preventative heartworm medication was ever forgotten
- If the pet was switched from one type of heartworm prevention to another
- If the pet was not on preventive medication and traveled to an endemic area
- The length of the heartworm season in the region where the pet lives.