After the first frost, it’s pretty uncommon to see a mosquito flitting around. That means that you can stop giving your pet their parasite prevention medication, right? With no visible bugs to contend with, pets are at minimal risk of diseases transmitted from these unfortunate bloodsuckers. Just begin giving them a dose in early spring, before the bugs start to take over, and your pet will be just fine, yes?
None of these thoughts are true, and sadly, this misconception is common. Vector-borne illness remains a grave threat, even when there’s snow on the ground. With year-round heartworm prevention, you and your pet can rest easy.
Just Keep Going
If it seems drastic or unnecessary to keep your pet medicated throughout the year, we offer the following reasons:
- Charlotte doesn’t have the coldest winters in the nation, so bugs can remain alive or in a dormant state until the sun starts to break the moderate chill.
- Pet owners are known to travel with their pets to even warmer locales once the mercury dips into the 30s. Mosquitoes can still be highly active in southern or coastal destinations.
- Heartworm prevention medication isn’t expensive; when you weigh the cost of potential treatment of the disease vs. preventative cost, the answer is clear.
- Heartworm prevention medication also protects from other internal parasites.
Missed or purposefully skipped doses can leave your pet vulnerable to the disease; all it takes is one bite from an infected mosquito for a full-blown infection to occur.
More To It
Parasite prevention medications work differently on different parasites. For example, fleas and ticks are repelled or killed before they can really create too many problems for pets.
Microscopic larvae are passed from the mouths of mosquitoes directly into a pet’s bloodstream, where they travel to the heart and lungs. Over a short period of time, they grow into fully-grown, fully reproducing adult heartworms. Responsible for heart failure, lung disease, and damage to other major organs, heartworm disease is absolutely critical to prevent.
Heartworm can be expensive and difficult to treat in dogs, but it’s almost always fatal in cats.
The Good News?
Heartworm is preventable with year-round medication. One dose a month, for 12 months, creates a forcefield around your pet. Infected mosquitoes might still bite your pet and pass the larvae into their bloodstream, but the medication will kill the larvae before they move to the major organs, eliminating the chances of growth and reproduction.
Heartworm Prevention Now
Preventing disease is the cornerstone of pet wellness. To that end, controlling your pet’s exposure to disease via parasites is absolutely paramount.