Saturday, April 23

Heartworm: You Should Probably Get Some Preventative This Weekend

A Good Samaritan acquired Aiyana through a Craigslist ad.  You can see photos of this poor dog's condition when the Good Samaritan took her home--emaciated and heartworm positive.  Aiyana's kind friend bought her plenty of healthy groceries and prepared her for her move to FBRN and continuing veterinary care for her overall condition and specifically the heartworm.

Aiyana has continued to gain weight in our care and is looking and feeling much better!  In a recent update, her foster mom said:

"Aiyana is doing great. She continues to put on weight and is up to 30lbs now. She loves her foster bro and gets along with him so well. They play all the time and do great on walks together. She will be going back to the vet in a week or so to see if she is healthy enough to start on her heartworm meds. There have been no potty accidents at all in the last few weeks so she is doing great with that. She continues to be the sweetest thing ever and loves to give kisses and hugs!!"

Heartworm treatment is difficult and a long haul.  At the moment, Aiyana, Alabaster (photo, right), Jelly, Elphie and Goji are all receiving heartworm treatment in foster care.  Many of you will remember some of our tough heartworm cases like Gris-Gris Benoit and Muffin and ThaliaSmeagol also has heartworm but he isn't strong enough to undergo the treatment to get rid of them, so he is living with them.  Some of the hospice kids--like Pixie--have it or did have it.  Bart and Lisa, Harvey, Spangles, Mr. Big, Twila, Violet, Iris, Mouse, Beau, Miz Biz, Crockett, Jolie, and Chumley all came to us with heartworm.

Heartworm used to be something only people in the southern US really worried about.  Not anymore.  Even areas where heartworm was virtually unheard of, like the Pacific Northwest, are now reporting cases in significant numbers, thanks to the increase and ease of travel, among other things. 

Heartworm treatment has changed over the years, and we are very fortunate that even dogs with advanced cases of heartworm, like Muffin and Thalia, have successfully endured their treatment.  But treatment is still painful and can be dangerous, and requires an extended period of rest and special care.

Elphie offers a royal raspberry to the pernicious heartworm as she spends her weeks in crate rest while undergoing treatment.

It's important to provide your dogs and cats with heartworm preventative.  For some people, heartworm preventative is a year-round obligation, and for others it's more seasonal.  For much of the country, now is the time to start your spring/summer preventative treatments--if the robin and the Easter bunny come, can the mosquito be far behind?  Sadly, no.  And some of those little suckers are going to be toting microfilaria that could kill your unprotected Fido if the larva they deposit into your dog develop into heartworms.

You don't want that.

We'd hate to see it.

                                  Goji gets some cuddles from a friend following his initial dose of heartworm treatment.

Talk to your vet and see about getting a prescription for a heartworm preventative.  Somewhere in your area, it's very likely that there's a hungry skeeter looking for a meal.  Maybe in your neighborhood.  Maybe in your backyard.  Maybe buzzing in your Frenchie's ear right this very minute!

(We never hesitate to use fear as a motivator here in the Frog P's kingdom.  If it gets the job done, the ends justify the means, that's our feeling.)

Off to be sure the screens are in,

The Frog Princess

1 comment:

Two French Bulldogs said...

We will spread the word. Good jod Elphie
Benny & Lily