There are many bacteria, virus, protozoa, and parasites that can infect your dog. A pet-parent should be prepared to take their pets to the vet for regular check-ups. While some infections can show obvious symptoms, heartworm infections can start showing symptoms when the parasite has spread to an alarming extent. Some basic understanding of heartworms can help you take care of your dog before or after they are diagnosed with them.
What are Heartworms?
Dirofilaria immitis is the parasitic roundworm which is commonly known as heartworm. These worms usually infect animals like cats and dogs. Cases of humans contracting heartworms are very rare. The heartworm completes its life cycle in the host animal’s body. They can remain in the host’s body for 8-7 years and can grow to become as long as 12 inches. There can be multiple heartworms in the host body.
How Do They Spread?
You do not need to worry about contracting heartworms from a dog that is infected. Heartworms are transferred from one animal to another by mosquitoes. Even if the mosquito bites an infected animal and immediately bites another animal, the worms will not spread. The worms need to incubate in the mosquito’s body for a certain period of time before getting injected into another victim’s body. Once they enter the bloodstream of an animal, they attach themselves to the heart, lungs and blood vessels. The worm can then start pumping eggs into the bloodstream of the animal. The eggs can either continue infecting the host or get transported to another host by mosquitoes. You can order dog interceptor for heartworms to end the spreading.
What is the Damage they Cause?
Heartworms can clog blood vessels, damage internal organs and drain nutrients from your dog’s body. Wheezing and coughing can be symptoms showing that your dog’s lungs are getting damaged. If the worms are left inside your dog’s body, they will never die out. The dying or dead worms will be replaced by the eggs left behind. The impact that the worms have on the lungs and heart can impact the brain as well. Without treatment, a dog with heartworm is destined to a slow death.
Can It Be Prevented?
Keeping your dog indoors during mosquito season can help reduce the chances of the infection. Taking measures to control the mosquito population is the best way to prevent heartworms from entering your dog’s body. You can order dog interceptor for heartworms and feed it to your dog. The interceptors make your dog’s body kill the parasites that enter it.
Are there Any Chances of Recovery?
The first thing you need to do if you suspect your dog has heartworm is getting their blood tested. Stool tests cannot always detect the presence of heartworms. With a blood report that shows the presence of the parasite, you can approach your vet. Treating your dog for heartworm can be an expensive path. But without the treatment, your dog will surely die. It is best to order dog inceptor for heartworms and administer them to prevent the infestation.
Do not let heartworms go untreated. Give your dog regular vet checkups to ensure their safety.