Here at Livingston Animal Hospital we have treated a number of patients for Heartworm disease in the past few years. One of our brave patients, Chimmie, was diagnosed with Heartworm disease shortly after being adopted by her forever family. Her mother Tracey has written a beautiful testimonial to demonstrate that, while it may seem like an abstract idea, Heartworm disease is a very real and very serious risk.
“This is our little 3 year old Pug/French bulldog cross, Chimmie. We adopted her a year and a half ago. She has been a great addition to our family, so sweet and fun loving. We had her examined right after adopting her and discovered that she tested positive for heart worm. The previous owner was seemly unaware of Chimmie’s condition.
There was no question that we wanted to treat her Heartworm Disease, as treatment would greatly improve her current health and her life span. We were very thankful for the expert advice from Dr B and the team at Livingston Animal hospital. Treating Heartworm can be a hard decision to make as it carries some risks and is a long and costly process. The staff at Livingston Hospital helped us weigh out the pros and cons of treatment by providing lots of information. They also supported us through each challenging step of the treatment.
We are very thankful that the treatment was successful and she is now Heartworm free. She has much more energy and is a happy, healthy girl. We look forward to spending many more years with her. This experience has been an education. Heartworm is active in the Niagara Region and can be spread to pets by infected mosquitoes. We believe that preventative Heartworm medication is as important as vaccinations for your pet’s health, especially after Chimmie’s experience. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Thank you Dr B and staff for all of your support!
-The DeGroat Family”
Heartworm. It’s one of those things that we all hear about, but we expect to never effect our beloved pets. The reality of the situation is that Heartworm is a very real danger for all pets, no matter their shape, size, or lifestyle.
Heartworm is transmitted through infected mosquitos, and all it takes is a single bite. The microscopic worms make their way through the bloodstream and into the heart, where they grow to be 15-30cm long. If a pet becomes infected with Heartworm and is not treated, the condition is fatal over time. There is only one treatment for Heartworm, and the treatment itself is also very dangerous and can be fatal as well. Miss Chimmie was lucky enough to come out of treatment happy and healthy, but many pets do not survive.
What can Livingston Animal Hospital do to protect your pet?
It is much easier, safer and more cost effective to prevent parasites than it is to treat the diseases they cause. For example, Heartworm prevention for a small dog can cost as little as $50 for 6 months protection but if your pet becomes infected with heartworm, the treatment costs between $1,500 and $3,000 and involves multiple hospital trips. Luckily there are multiple prescription products that prevent Heartworm disease, and prevention is easy! We offer oral medications as well as topical applications that, when given once monthly during the warm season, will effectively protect your pet from infection!
Give us a call at (905) 309-9600 to learn more, and to schedule an appointment to get your pets started on prevention!