Memphis Animal Clinic understands that heartworm, tick, flea, and other parasites control is a year-round effort here in Memphis, Tennessee. Prevention is vital for keeping your pets comfortable and safe. Parasites are not only a nuisance, but some may cause serious illness in pets and humans alike. In some cases, parasites can be fatal. That’s why parasite prevention is one of the most important things you can do to keep both of you healthy.
How Parasites Affect Animals
Common parasites that may affect your cat or dog or include:
Intestinal Parasites - tapeworms, roundworms, whipworms, and hookworms
External Parasites - mites, ticks, and fleas
Heartworms - these are parasites that often live in your pet’s lungs or heart.
Fleas, Ticks & Intestinal Parasites
It’s not always easy to tell if your pet has parasites. Some ticks can be the size of a pinhead while fleas can hide under your pet’s fur making them difficult to see. Intestinal parasites, like roundworms, can cause diarrhea, but many infected pets will not show any signs of illness. Fleas can transmit tapeworms and Bartonella, a bacteria that causes “cat-scratch fever” in humans. Ticks, on the other hand, can transmit infections like Lyme disease.
Heartworm Prevention for Dogs & Cats
Heartworms are a serious and potentially fatal disease in pets. The twelve-inch long worms can live in the blood vessels, lungs and heart of infected pets, causing organ damage, heart failure, lung disease, and eventually fatality.
Common Questions Regarding Heartworm
How does my pet get heartworm?
Heartworms in pets can be transmitted super fast. One infected mosquito is enough to infect your pet with the larval form of the heartworm parasite. Mosquitos then transmit the disease from one animal to the next. They live in the animal, producing baby worms that circulate in the bloodstream. Heartworms can grow and live for up to 3 years in cats and 5-7 years in dogs.
What can I do to protect my pet?
Preventing heartworm disease isn’t exactly rocket science! In fact, it is the most cost-effective and safest approach, but treatment is available for dogs, although lengthy and costly. Dogs should be tested annually, while cats should be tested before starting prevention and re-tested as the veterinarian deems appropriate. There is NO treatment for cats.
Memphis Animal Clinic has safe, effective products that cater to you and your pet's lifestyle and budget. Heartworm prevention is provided throughout the year with varying options on treatment intervals and dosages.
Contact Us for Prevention and Control
Being proactive in parasite prevention is key to averting the dangers of parasites and giving your pets a healthy lifestyle. With a preventive care exam, we can help you get the right medications to help control fleas, ticks, and other parasites. Reach out to us today at Memphis Animal Clinic in Memphis, Tennessee.