What is Heartworm?
Heartworm is a parasite that is spread by mosquitoes. It lives in the bloodstream and heart pulmonary arteries of affected dogs, and causes weakening of the heart muscle. Prevention is important because the disease is potentially fatal and treatment can be expensive and dangerous!
All puppies should start heartworm prevention at around 12 weeks of age and need to continue prevention for their ENTIRE LIFE. Options for prevention include:
Heartworm injections (Proheart SR-12)
- Given at 3 months, 6 months, then annually thereafter
- If you think you are going to forget monthly treatments, then this is the best option!
Monthly tablets/chews or spot-ons
- Interceptor or Sentinel
Kittens that live in a high mosquito area should also receive monthly heartworm prevention starting from around 12 weeks of age. Options for prevention include:
What Happens If I Miss A Treatment?
If you begin prevention after 5 months of age or have forgotten to give your dog regular heartworm prevention, there is a chance that your pet already has heartworm. We recommend performing a simple in-house blood test before beginning or re-commencing prevention.