Did you know April was Heartworm Prevention Month? When it comes to heartworm, prevention is key. Taking preventative measures to keep your pet from developing heartworm is more cost effective, easier, and safer than heartworm treatment after the disease has developed. Our team of veterinarians at Anasazi Animal Clinic take heartworm seriously, and we want you to be aware of all of the preventative options for your furry friend’s health!

A Program Just For Your Pet

Be aware that all FDA-approved heartworm preventatives require a prescription. Give us a call to schedule an appointment—we will check your pet’s overall health and test for heartworm disease, and work with you to come up with a preventative care plan that is tailored to your fur-baby’s specific needs. You will have multiple options in how treatment is administered, from topical solutions to pills to a shot, and we will thoroughly discuss the best option for you and your pet. Let’s take a quick look at these options: 

Oral Prevention

Oral prevention involves giving your pet a chewable pill once a month. This is often considered a simple solution, as most pets think the pill is a treat—and are excited to eat it! These treatments are both affordable and effective. They typically protect against multiple parasites, in addition to heartworm—including hookworm and roundworm. Some also prevent whipworms and fleas. 

It is very important to keep oral heartworm preventatives away from pets, as overdosing can lead to illness and death. The tablets are often chewable and made to taste good, so a pet may be tempted to eat all of them if they have access to them—so ensure that you keep oral heartworm medications out of the reach of your pets.

Topical Prevention

Topical heartworm prevention entails applying a solution to your pet’s skin on the back of her neck once a month. Once applied, the medicine is then absorbed into the body, killing any parasites that may be forming. Other topical medications can also protect your pet from fleas, mites, roundworms, whipworms, hookworms, and ticks. Talk with your veterinarian about the pros and cons of each type—and to discuss whether or not topical treatments are best for you and your household. 

If you have children or other pets in your home, topical preventatives may not be the best option. No one in the household should come into contact with the site of the medication for a minimum of two hours after application. If someone does come into contact with the medication, it can irritate the skin and eyes. Talk with your vet about possible reactions to look for in both humans and your pet.

Heartworm Prevention Injection

Another option is an injectable prevention medication that is only administered once every six or 12 months. This is a quick and easy solution that may allow you to rest easy knowing your pet is covered for six months to a year after each shot. It may be a great option for people who often forget to administer monthly medications or don’t want to worry about having to give it each month. Talk with your vet about possible side effects and which injection your furry friend might be eligible to receive. 

Give Us A Call Today

For more information on heartworm prevention, connect with us online! We’d be happy to talk through the heartworm medication options with you and come up with a preventative care plan that is designed for your pet. We’ll ensure that you get the proper dosage and type of medication for your pet, and get her on her way to living her most vibrant and healthy life!