There was a time when parasites like fleas, ticks, and roundworms were considered mostly a nuisance. Now, however, we know that parasites can cause serious illness and even death in pets. For example, ticks can transmit infections like Lyme disease, and fleas can transmit tapeworms and Bartonella – the bacteria that causes “cat-scratch fever” in humans. Another type of parasite, called a heartworm, is transmitted by mosquitoes. Heartworms live in your pet’s lungs and heart, causing damage to these organs, and sometimes even death. Intestinal parasites, like roundworms and hookworms, also threaten pets and are even transmissible to humans.
You may not always be able to tell if your pet has parasites. Fleas can hide under your pet’s fur, and some ticks are very tiny (only the size of a pinhead), so they are very difficult to find. Intestinal parasites like roundworms can cause diarrhea and other problems, but many infected pets don’t show any signs of illness at all.
Fortunately, we can recommend tests to tell if your pet has parasites. We can also examine your pet for evidence of fleas, ticks, or other parasites. Our expert staff can recommend medications to help control fleas, ticks, heartworms, and intestinal parasites. Preventing parasites in your pets also helps protect children and other family members, so let’s work together to protect your pets and family.
Veterinary examinations and parasite testing are important ways to protect your pet’s health. Let our knowledgeable staff provide you with a comprehensive parasite control program. We can recommend a schedule for parasite testing, discuss what signs of parasites you can look for at home, review ways to control parasites in and around your home, discuss treatment options if your pet has parasites, and recommend ways to control and prevent parasites in the future.
Parasites are not just a nuisance. They can carry serious diseases that affect your pet’s overall health and longevity. Let us help you protect your pet. Call today to find out how!
Heartworm and Parasites
Our hospital offers education on a number of Parasite Control Programs. The most common parasites pets deal with are fleas and ticks. Fleas and ticks are capable of transmitting infection and disease to pets through a bite. Many pets also suffer from severe allergic reaction to the bites of fleas and ticks. Internal parasites (such as worms) are also capable of causing severe illness in pets. It is imperative that owners use one of the many commercially available products that protect pets from these parasites in order to maintain their pet’s health.
Our staff and veterinarians will help you choose the correct product based on your pets risk factors and health status.
In addition, because of the damages posed by intestinal parasites to both pets and people, all dogs and cats should have at least one fecal examination per year to test for intestinal parasites (e.g., roundworms, hookworms, Giardia). There are specific treatments available for pets with GI (gastro-intestinal) parasites.
We recommend that all dogs be on an effective heartworm preventive year round. Administration is easier than ever with once-a-month beef flavored chewable tablets. Cats, too, should be treated for parasites on a regular basis. The Heartworm medication that is recommended is also effective in preventing numerous other parasites.