Can you imagine a foot-long worm living in your heart? It sounds like something out of a science fiction movie, but unfortunately, these creatures are real and prominent in Oklahoma. Heartworms pose a serious and often fatal threat to dogs living all over the United States. The cost of treatment for heartworms is fifteen times more expensive than heartworm medicine.
How does heartworm medicine work?
To understand how heartworm medicine works, it’s important to understand the life cycle. Heartworms are transmitted from one infected dog to another by a mosquito. The immature heartworm slowly matures and migrates through your dog’s body until it reaches the heart six months later.
Heartworm medicine works by killing the immature heartworm at a specific point in its lifecycle. Dr. Coffin recommends heartworm medication every 30 days all year long. Missing one single dose can allow the immature heartworm to advance and continue to an adult worm. Heartworm medicine is not effective at killing adult heartworms.
Heartworm medication is a prescription medication that must be purchased from your veterinarian. Before giving your dog heartworm prevention, it is important to test your dog for adult heartworms. Certain heartworm medicine can cause a harmful and even fatal reaction if your dog has adult heartworms. It is safe to start puppies younger than six months of age on heartworm prevention without testing them because it takes six months for a heartworm to reach the heart. In fact, Dr. Anna Coffin recommends starting puppies on heartworm prevention at eight weeks of age.
Guthrie Pet Hospital offers a variety of heartworm medications:
- Heartgard Plus: A chewable treat that needs to be given every 30 days for heartworm prevention, roundworms, and hookworms.
- Iverhart Plus: This is a generic product of Heartgard Plus
- Trifexis: A chewable tablet that needs to be given every 30 days for heartworm and flea prevention. It also treats roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms.
- Revolution: A topical product that needs to be given every 30 days for heartworm and flea prevention. It also treats roundworms, hookworms, and Sarcoptic mange.
To be eligible to win a lifetime supply of heartworm medicine for one of your pets, all you need to do is purchase any of the above medications at Guthrie Pet Hospital during the month of May. The winner will be drawn at 6:00 pm on May 31st, 2016.
You must have a valid client-patient relationship with Guthrie Pet Hospital to purchase heartworm prevention from our office. To establish a client-patient relationship contact Guthrie Pet Hospital for your new client appointment. Mention this article and receive 10% off the exam price during the month of May.