No other animal is as lovable, adorable, and full of warmth as dogs. They adapt well to human beings and can be trained to do almost anything. However, these domesticated canines run around in dirt and mud, making it hard to clean them. Every dog owner knows how sensitive they are and can quickly get sick despite their best intentions.
This article goes over the serious problem of heartworm disease, including what it is and how you can prepare your dog for it.
What Is Heartworm?
Heartworm, also known as Dirofilariaimmitis, is a parasitic roundworm in infected dogs’ hearts and blood vessels. Mosquitoes transmit the microscopic heartworm larvae into the bloodstream, which start breeding within a dog rapidly.
Heartworm infection can cause severe damage to the heart and lungs and can even be fatal if left untreated. The severity of the infection depends on the number of worms present in the dog’s body, the duration of the infection, and the dog’s overall health. In advanced cases, symptoms may include difficulty breathing, fainting, and even death.
According to BMC Journal, more than 100,000 dogs are infected with Heartworm disease annually in the US, which represents a serious threat to dogs’ health.
Special Diet And Hygiene For Dogs
Special diet and hygiene are essential steps in preventing heartworm infection in dogs. Here are some tips on how to keep your dog healthy and protected from heartworm:
- Feed your dog a well-balanced diet: A healthy diet can help boost your dog’s immune system, making them less susceptible to heartworm infection. Omega 3 fatty acids are considered a significant source of nutrition for a healthy heart, strong bones, and soft fur.
- Keep your dog at a healthy weight: Overweight dogs are more susceptible to heartworm infection, so it’s essential to keep your dog at a healthy weight through proper diet and exercise.
- Keep your dog clean and groomed: Regular grooming, including regular baths and brushing, can help keep your dog’s skin and coat healthy. It can also help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home and yard.
- Please keep your dog indoors during peak mosquito hours: Mosquitoes are most active at dawn and dusk, so it’s best to keep your dog inside during these times.
- Keep your yard clean and mosquito-free: Mosquitoes breed in standing water, so it’s essential to eliminate any standing water in your yard, such as in bird baths, rain barrels, or gutters.
- Use mosquito repellents: Mosquito repellents and sprays can be used in the yard and on your dog when outside. Specific breeds like Aedes Aegypti are particularly adept at spreading heartworms, and it’s best to look out for any heartworm case in your area.
Preventive Chewable Medicines For Dogs
There are several chewable medications, like Heartgard for Dogs, available online and at local pharmacies that owners can use to prevent heartworm infection in dogs. These medications are typically administered monthly and are designed to be easy to give to your dog. According to most experts and veterinarians, Ivermectin comes to be the most recommended when dealing with heartworms.
Ivermectin: This medication is an antiparasitic agent commonly used to prevent heartworm infection. It also treats parasitic infections such as demodectic, sarcoptic mange, and ear mites.
It is important to note that these medications are prescription drugs and should only be given to your dog under the direction and supervision of a veterinarian. It is also essential to follow the dosage and administration instructions provided by your veterinarian and schedule regular check-ups to ensure that your dog responds well to the medication.
According to the American Heartworm Society, it is recommended to have a regular heartworm test done all year round. Consult with your veterinarian for the best preventive options for your dog.
In conclusion, heartworm infection is a severe and potentially life-threatening disease that can devastate our beloved dogs. However, we can significantly reduce their risk of contracting diseases by taking the necessary steps to prepare our furry friends for this condition. It is important to remember that prevention is critical, and by following the advice mentioned above, chances are significantly reduced.
It’s not just about the physical well-being of our furry friends, but it’s also about the emotional well-being of our furry family members. The thought of losing our beloved companion to a preventable disease is devastating. Still, by taking the necessary steps to protect them, we can have peace of mind and enjoy many more happy years with our furry friends.