What about Heartworms?

Heartworm disease is progressive and quite serious. In order for a pet to have a good chance at recovery early detection is extremely important. You should have your pet tested once a year and treat them year-round. The test is simple. Your vet only needs a small amount of blood and the results are usually back quickly.

Your Dog Tested Positive

The first thing you want to do is confirm that your dog does have heartworm.

As difficult as it might be you will need to restrict the amount of exercise the dog gets. The more activity your dog does increases the rate of damage to the lungs and heart caused by the heartworm.

You will need to follow your veterinarian’s recommendations for treating the disease.

At about the six-month mark after treatment has completed, your dog should be retested to be sure that he is free and clear.

You also need to be giving him heartworm medicine every month year-round for the rest of his life.

Your Cat Tested Positive

Cats are entirely different. Since unlike dogs cats bodies are not an ideal place for heartworms to grow, they generally have very few. Sometimes the infection can even go away on its own. Here’s a basic overview of what you might be able to expect if your cat tests positive:

Diagnosis can be difficult and may require a physical exam, x-rays, and several blood tests along with an ultrasound. Just one worm can cause a cat to be extremely ill.

When it comes to treatment there is no wonder drug and any of the drugs used to treat dogs are not suitable. It will basically be all up to you and your veterinarian.

If your cat has not shown any respiratory issues, but worms were found you should have a chest x-ray done every 6 to 12 months to monitor its condition.

It is extremely important, as with dogs, to use a preventative each and every month.

If you are at all concerned about heartworm disease and your pet, or need to get them onto a preventative regime, there is an animal hospital in Chicago that can help you with that. Portage Park Animal Hospital and Dental Clinic is equipped with all the most up-to-date facilities necessary for testing and treatment.

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