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At Village Veterinary Practice, we care about your pet's well being and home care as much as their medical health. Below you will find some articles that we have written to help you take care of your pet.

 

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Heartworm Disease

 
Each spring we remind our clients that heartworm season is upon us again. Heartworm disease is spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. When the mosquito feeds again, it can transmit infective larvae to a healthy dog. The larvae penetrate the dog's skin and migrate through the tissues and develop over the next few months. If left untreated, the parasites will infest the dog's heart.

In the late stages of heartworm disease, the patient will develop heart failure and the disease becomes very difficult to treat. Fortunately, this stage of the disease is easily avoidable through testing and prophylactic measures. Village Veterinary Practice promotes prevention through monthly medication as the preferred course of action for our patients.

Village Veterinary Practice offers medication for heartworm protection as well as heartworm blood testing. We recommend that all dog owners have their pets (dogs over six months of age) tested annually for heartworm disease. Heartworm is easily diagnosed through a simple blood test which is performed in our lab and results are received the same day.

Village Veterinary Practice recommends year round preventative maintenance rather than “warm” month treatment. Midwest winters are not consistently cold enough to guarantee against mosquito activity. Warmer falls and early springs can lead to mosquitoes which are the cause of heartworm disease.

While heartworm preventatives are highly effective they are not 100% guarantee. This is why Village Veterinary Practice promotes annual testing on your pet. Occasionally a dose gets missed, spit out, vomited, or is not completely absorbed, thus resulting in inadequate protection. Annual heartworm testing is a safeguard against your pet suffering from heartworm disease without your knowledge. Giving heartworm preventative to an already infected pet can cause further health issues.

Village Veterinary Practice offers several oral preventatives against heartworm disease which also protects your pet from intestinal parasites and immature fleas. Most heartworm preventatives are flavored for a palatable taste so that it can be given as an enjoyable treat.

Call us to set up an appointment to discuss heartworm testing and prevention methods for your pet.

 

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