If you are getting a new dog, it is up to you to take care of it. One thing you must consider is heartworms. Below is information about heartworms, as well as what you can do to prevent your dog from getting them.
Heartworms are a parasite and are a worm. They can grow up to around a foot long inside your dog's heart. It affects not only the heart but the blood vessels around the heart. These worms can live for many years and your dog could have hundreds of them living in their heart or surrounding area. These worms clog the vessels and other organs and can cause a lot of damage that is generally not treatable. If not treated early, your dog may likely die from heartworms due to heart failure.
Your dog can get heartworms easily, which is why it is important they are protected from them. They get heartworms by being bitten by a mosquito. When a mosquito feeds on a dog that has heartworms, they ingest the baby worms. When they then bite another dog, such as your dog, they inject these baby worms into your dog which will then grow in the heart. Once the heartworms grow into adult worms, they can then reproduce to create more worms inside your dog's heart and other organs.
The best way to prevent heartworms for your dog is to take heartworm-preventative medication. You can get this medication from your dog's vet.
The vet will first test your dog for heartworms before they start it on this preventative medication. If you take your dog for a yearly exam, part of this examination will likely be checking for heartworms. If heartworms are found in the early stages, the vet may be able to treat your dog to remove them. In the beginning, your dog will show no signs of having heartworms. By the time they do, it is often too late to save them.
Heartworm medication comes in pill form that you can mix with your dog's food or wrap food around for them to eat. There is also topical treatment available that you place under their skin. This is much like using flea treatments. The vet can inject heartworm medication for your dog, which will last for many months. The vet will choose the strength of the pills or topical medication for your dog. This will depend on the size of your dog and how much they weigh.
To learn more about heartworm tablets, contact a vet.
A few months back, I realized that our kids were really lonely. We knew that we wouldn't be able to have any other children, so we started focusing on what we could do to make a difference. We started exploring the possibility of adopting an animal, and before we knew it, we were bringing home a pet that we knew our kids would love. They were incredibly receptive to the idea of having the little puppy, and after a few days together, I knew that he would become a treasured member of our family. Read more about pet ownership on this blog.