Best Medication for Heartworms in Dogs
As a concerned pet owner, you need to be aware of the health issues your pet dog can face in their life. Even when we do everything we can to keep our pets safe, there's no telling what might cause them to fall ill. Dogs like being active. That's why you should take them outside for walks and to play. However, going outside to play, etc. does make pet dogs vulnerable to a number of diseases. One ailment you should know about is heartworms in dogs.
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What is heartworm disease?
As a pet owner you should do your research regarding what is heartworm. Take note that a heartworm disease, also known as dirofilariasis, is a severe ailment which can even lead to death. Dirofilaria immitis is a parasite that is responsible for causing the heartworm disease. It is a blood-borne parasite that can spread to other animals such as cats, ferrets, and although a rare possibility, in humans as well.
These worms live, grow, and mature inside the heart, lungs, and other associated blood vessels of the affected pet. Once larvae heartworms grow into adults, they can clog the vessels leading to and away from the heart. This means they can hinder the blood supply to other parts of the body especially lungs, kidneys, and liver resulting in these organs to malfunction.
How is heartworm in dogs caused?
Dogs are the most common host for heartworms. Heartworms may live inside a dog, mature into adults, and even multiply to produce offspring. If the infection is left untreated, the numbers of heartworms may drastically increase.
This disease is usually caused by transmission from pet to pet. The development of the heartworms is a complete cycle that begins with them being produced, transmitted, and finally reaching maturity.
The Lifecycle of heartworms
Mosquitos play an important role in the transmission of heartworms. Adult female heartworm living in an infected animal produces microscopic offspring called microfilaria. These microfilariae begin to circulate in the bloodstream until a mosquito bites the infected animal. They are then sucked up into the mosquito’s body and live there for about 10 to 14 days, giving the worms enough time to develop and mature into larvae which is the infective stage.
Next, when this mosquito bites any other animal, the infective larvae are left onto the animal's coat and soon gradually enter the new host. Over a period of 6 months, these larvae mature into adults while still in the host body.
On reaching maturity, heartworms can live for 5 to 7 years in a dog, and it is also possible that the number of heartworms in a dog may continue to increase with every mosquito season. It is said that one dog may have as many as 300 worms present inside its body when diagnosed. It is unfortunate that the disease is usually well advanced by the time any heartworm symptoms in dogs are visible.
Heartworm symptoms in dogs
In the initial stages of the heartworm disease, little to no symptoms are shown by infected dogs. However, the longer the infection remains in the pet, the more it spreads, and the more likely the symptoms will increase. The most serious symptoms are shown by dogs after exercise, dogs that are heavily infested with heartworms or those that carry other health issues.
The most common symptoms of heartworm disease are as follows:
- A dry cough
- Shortness of breath
- Weakness and fatigue
- Weight loss
- Loss of stamina
- Decreased appetite
- Progress of heartworm disease in dogs may lead to heart failure due to blockage of blood in vessels.
- Some may even develop swollen belly and legs due to excess fluid accumulation.
- Severely infected dogs may even die suddenly due to exercise or excitement.
Such dogs require immediate surgical removal of the heartworm blockage in order to survive.
Treatment of heartworms in dogs
Before initiating any kind of treatment, it is necessary to carry out a diagnostic test to ensure that the dog is safe to undergo heartworm treatment.
There are two treatment options as follows:
1. Heartworm medication in dogs
Once infestation in ensured, the veterinarian prescribes a course of antibiotics and steroids before beginning the actual treatment against adult heartworms.
An antibiotic will be prescribed to dogs with heartworms to combat the bacteria called Wolbachia. This bacteria lives within the heartworms and can trigger an inflammatory reaction.
A number of reliable heartworm medication can easily be found online at World Pet Express for heartworm disease prevention. It is a reliable source for purchasing 100% genuine medicines for the well-being of your pet.
Reliable heartworm medication you can purchase from World Pet Express without vet prescription includes:
This is a monthly oral preventive that is able to guard pets against not only heartworms but also adult roundworms, adult hookworms and whipworms.
This is meant for dogs or puppies (4 weeks or older) for guarding against heartworms, whipworms, and more.
Being a broad-spectrum parasiticide (FDA approved), Revolution helps dogs and cats be protected against a variety of parasites.
It includes Ivermectin to kill the larvae of heartworms and protect your pet.
This is a monthly oral tablet for fighting heartworms, roundworms, and more in dogs.
It is a real beef-chewable tablet for dealing with heartworm symptoms in dogs. It happens to be a highly recommended option by veterinarians.
Also, complete rest is required during and after the treatment. The dog should not exercise or be overly active for at least one month after the treatment.
2. Surgery for heartworms in dogs
Sometimes the pet is too heavily infested with heartworms that the disease is not only limited to the heart and lungs but has spread to other areas as well including the superior vein called vena cava. For such a condition, surgery becomes essential. Usually, almost all surgeries are successful, but complications arise in dogs with severe symptoms of heartworms, some even proving fatal.
Wrapping it up
Prevention of heartworm disease is the best thing you can do for your pet. Make sure you're doing everything you can to prevent heartworm disease from negatively affecting your dog's life. For this reason, effective heartworm medication is available to kill all the larvae before they can mature into adult worms. Also, ensure you get all medicines from a reliable place such as World Pet Express.