Veterinarians Near By Me | Curing Heartworm Disease
Pet owners should understand that while curing heartworm disease is possible says veterinarian near by me. It is a much more difficult thing to do. That not only costs more money. It takes more time. And puts the animal at greater risk.
In order to understand why, pet owners need to understand the lifecycle of a heartworm. How it relates to the animal. And how the animal gets infected in the first place.
Veterinarians near by me says the one and only place that animals can get heartworm period is from the bite of an infected mosquito. As the infected mosquito bites them.
The mosquito which is carrying the heartworm a larva called dirofilaria. Will transfer the larva into the animal. And it will enter the animal’s bloodstream.
And within 5 to 7 months will mature into an adult heartworm parasite. Once the parasite is fully grown. It will start looking for a place to attach to the animal. So that I can start to reproduce.
Typically, it will find the heart as well as the lungs. Which is why heartworm has been given the name heartworm. Because it is commonly found in animals hearts.
While it will take 6 to 7 months for a heartworm to reach maturity. Once it has reached maturity. It will start to reproduce. And it is not uncommon for an animal to eventually accumulate hundreds of heartworm’s.
The lifespan of a fully grown heartworm parasite depends on what type of animal it has infected. In cats, heartworm will live for approximately 2 to 3 years before dying says veterinarians near by me.
And in dogs, heartworm’s can live upwards of 5 to 7 years before they die. However, once the heartworm dies. It will have hundreds of other adult heartworm’s in its place. Infecting the animal’s heart and lungs.
Over time, the larger the heartworm’s get. As well as how many heartworm is can start to grow inside the animal after several years. The heartworm’s will start to impact the animals ability to function.
They will start having difficulty breathing, due to the large number of parasites in their lungs. And their heart will have a much more difficult time pumping blood as well.
Cats and dogs will likely experience different symptoms. With dogs experiencing symptoms such as lethargic, and unwillingness to do physical activity. As well as weight loss in conjunction with coughing and having a hard time breathing.
Cats will also cough and have difficulty breathing. And while they have weight loss. They will also refuse food and vomit. But their symptoms include fainting spells, having a difficult time walking. And having seizures as well.
In both animals, the longer they have been infected with heartworm’s. The more it is going to cause organ failure that will result in the animal’s death says veterinarians near by me.
If a pet owner does not get a diagnosis of heartworm. Until after their pet starts exhibiting symptoms. It may be too late for their pet to get treatment. Which is why preventative medicine and regular testing is so important.
Veterinarians Near By Me | Curing Heartworm Disease
Heartworm disease is very devastating says veterinarians near by me. Typically because pet owners do not have any idea that their pet is infected. Until the condition is extremely serious and life-threatening.
However, it is possible for pet owners to have preventative medicine. That can help protect against ever getting heartworm disease. But also, for pet owners to engage in regular testing.
Because the sooner they get diagnosed with heartworm disease. The easier time veterinarians near by me will have at curing the animal.
The blood tests that they can get is very simple. And typically will be done every year, or every other year by veterinarians near by me.
The blood test will look for slightly different things if it is a cat or dog. For example, in dogs, but veterinarians are looking for. Is an antigen, released by the adult female heartworm parasite into the animals bloodstream.
However, for cats, they are looking for something completely different. Instead, they are looking for antibodies. Which is a chemical produced by the cat’s body. In response to the heartworm larva in their bloodstream.
However, both tests for cats and dogs are extremely quick. And can give a pet owner a diagnosis within the same visit to their veterinarian.
If they end up testing positive for heartworm. It will be a much more successful cure. Because the pet has not started exhibiting symptoms of heartworm disease yet.
The treatment for animals who have heartworm is long, as well as expensive. And very harsh on the animal’s body. Which is why it is important that the animal is in as good health as possible.
As well, pet owners need to take into consideration. That the medication that their pet gets. Will not kill the heartworm right away. Merely shorten its life span.
So that instead of having heartworm’s for 7 years. A dog might end up having heartworm’s for only 2 or 3. Also, the medication contains arsenic. Which is potentially dangerous to an animal.
This is why when they undergo the treatment. The first thing that the veterinarian does. Is inject an antibiotic called doxycycline. Which is designed to weaken the heartworm before treatment. As well as protect the animal from the treatment itself.
Not only does the doxycycline weaken the heartworm parasites. But it will also sterilize them. So that they can no longer reproduce during their significantly shortened lifespan.
Also, heartworm’s will also carry a bacteria called wolbachia. Which can cause an infection in the animal. Once the heartworm’s die. Therefore the doxycycline antibiotic injection is very important to do first.
After waiting 30 days for the antibiotic to fully take effect. The pet owner will bring their animal back for 2 injections, 24 hours a part of the medication designed to eventually kill the heartworm.
As was previously mentioned. It will only shorten the heartworm’s lifespan. But as the heartworm’s die. Their body will decompose, and could potentially create a pulmonary embolism. Which is another reason why the treatment is so risky.
Because of how risky the cure is to treat heartworm disease. Pet owners should use preventative medicine as a first line of defence against this terrible disease.