Heartworm disease is a serious health risk for both dogs and cats. The microscopic worm is transmitted through the bite of a mosquito and gradually works its way through the bloodstream to the heart and lungs. There, these tiny worms grow and reproduce, making your pet sick and eventually causing death. At Morgan Pet Clinic in West Omaha, NE, we offer both heartworm prevention products and treatment for heartworm disease.
Heartworm Disease in Pets
The microscopic heartworm cannot be transmitted by ordinary contact with other animals or through the environment. A mosquito will bite an infected animal and then transfer the worms to the next animal bitten. Dogs are the main targets for heartworms, but cats and ferrets can also be infected. Heartworm disease has been found in all states in the U.S. and is prevalent throughout the year in some areas.
Symptoms of Heartworm Disease
Heartworm disease can come with various symptoms in pets. These symptoms include a constant cough, reluctance to exercise, or difficulty breathing when doing normal activities. The animal may vomit frequently, eat less, or lose weight. Our veterinarians diagnose heartworm disease through the use of a blood test. Additional testing may be needed to detect the disease in cats.
Treatment of Heartworm Disease
Animals with heartworm disease are generally put on an enforced rest protocol to limit their activity. Monthly treatment to kill adult and immature worms is administered. Antibiotics can reduce infection of tissues, and other drugs may be provided to deal with heart problems. For advanced cases, surgery may be needed to remove worms from the organs.
Prevention of Heartworm Disease
Pet owners can choose from several oral medications that are administered monthly at home to prevent heartworms, or a spot-on treatment that protects pets from heartworms. The spot-on type may offer protection against other types of parasites as well. An injectable form is also available from our vets, which offers protection for 6 months.
Visit Morgan Pet Clinic
Heartworm disease treatment and prevention methods are very important to maintaining your pet’s health. Our veterinary team at Morgan Pet Clinic in West Omaha, NE understands how important your pet is to you. In addition to heartworm treatment and prevention services, we offer other veterinary services, including vaccinations, wellness exams, diagnostics, surgery, dental care, and emergency care. We not only treat cats and dogs, but also treat birds, reptiles, rabbits and pocket pets. Our team is happy to answer any questions you have about heartworm disease or other conditions. Call Morgan Pet Clinic today to learn more or to schedule an appointment.