April - National Heartworm Awareness Month.

What is heartworm?

  • Heartworm disease is a serious disease that results in severe lung disease, heart failure, other organ damage, and death in pets, mainly dogs, cats, and ferrets. It is caused by a parasitic worm.

How do dogs get heartworms?

  • Only by the bite of an infected mosquito. There’s no other way dogs get heartworms. And there’s no way to tell if a mosquito is infected. That’s why prevention is so important.


What are the first signs of heartworms in dogs?

  • Signs of heartworm disease may include a mild persistent cough, reluctance to exercise, fatigue after moderate activity, decreased appetite, and weight loss. As heartworm disease progresses, pets may develop heart failure and the appearance of a swollen belly due to excess fluid in the abdomen.

How much is heartworm medication for dogs?

  • The average cost of heartworm treatment for dogs is often around $1,000. However, it can range from $500 to $1,100 or even more depending mainly on the size of your dog, veterinary bills, and the stage of the disease.

How do you treat heartworms in dogs naturally?

  • They can be controlled naturally with citrus oils, cedar oils, and diatomaceous earth. Dogs needing conventional treatment may benefit from herbs such as milk thistle and homeopathics such as berberis; these minimize toxicity from the medications and dying heartworms.

If one of my dogs has heartworms, can they give it to my other dogs?

  • No. Again, the only way heartworms are transmitted is through the bite of an infected mosquito. And even if an uninfected mosquito bit your infected dog, and then bit your uninfected dog the same night, they wouldn’t transmit the parasite from one dog to the other. That’s because when a mosquito bites an infected animal, the heartworm needs to undergo an incubation period in the mosquito before the mosquito can infect other animals.

How can I prevent my dogs from getting heartworms?

  • For less than the cost of going to Starbucks for a weekly coffee, you can prevent heartworm disease in your dog. There are monthly pills, monthly topicals that you put on the skin, there’s also a six-month injectable product, plus holistic methods.

  • The damage that’s done to the dog and the cost of the treatment is way more than the cost to prevent heartworm disease. A year’s supply of heartworm preventative will cost about $35 to $80, depending on a dog’s weight.




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