Heartworms, Hookworms, and Roundworms, Oh My!

By: Tamara Kees
Veterinary Assistant
Fairgrounds Animal Hospital

April is Heartworm and Parasite Prevention Month at Fairgrounds Animal Hospital

heartworm prevention - Fairgrounds Animal Hospital

I would like to give you an overview of heartworm disease and how to prevent it easily and safely with a once-a-month chewable tablet. Heartworm disease is an often fatal illness that affects over 1 million and an unknown number of cats every year in the U.S. Heartworms are a parasite that can be transmitted into a dog or cat’s bloodstream via mosquito bites. A mosquito that has bitten an infected dog, cat, or wild animal will transmit heartworm larvae when it bites an uninfected animal. Once infected, a dog or cat will not show symptoms, sometimes for years, while the heartworm larvae grow into full blown worms and lodge themselves in the heart. Treating a full blown heartworm infection can cost thousands of dollars, be very complicated, and is often unsuccessful. Often, by the time symptoms show, it is too late to successfully treat. Symptoms include coughing, difficulty breathing and lethargy.