Heartworm Prevention and Treatment
Georgia is a high endemic area.
- Get Your Pet a Heartworm Test If Your Pet Tests Negative – Give Your Pet Heartworm Prevention
- If Your Pet Tests Positive + Treat Immediately
A Heartworm is a parasitic roundworm (Dirofilaria immitis) that is spread from host to host through the bites of mosquitoes. The heartworm is a type of filaria, a small thread-like worm. The definitive host is the dog but it can also infect cats and other animals. The parasite is commonly called “heartworm” because the adult reproductive stage of its life cycle resides primarily in the pulmonary artery of its host where it can live for many years. Heartworm infection may result in serious disease for the host; infected dogs that are untreated may die. Treatment also carries risks. The best defense against heartworm disease is the use of prophylactic treatment given monthly.
- Treat all pets in home. Fleas will undoubtedly attack all animals in the house.
- Choose the right dosage for each pet’s weight. Flea preventatives are most effective when used for the correct weight of each pet.
- Treat home and yard. Use a fogger, spray, or powder to treat furniture, carpet, and hard to reach areas inside the home. Use a yard spray to treat outdoor areas. Vacuum frequently, especially carpets and other soft coverings where your pet tends to lounge. Don’t forget your car.
Wash your pet’s bed, blanket, toys and other soft items in the hottest water possible.
It’s a good idea to check pets for fleas on a regular basis. It is especially important to check if your pets seem unusually nervous or grumpy, or if they’re scratching more than seems natural.
A two-prong approach to tick control.
- Control ticks in the environment.
- Control ticks on your pets.
In your environment, minimize the threat of ticks with two simple tactics:
- Make your yard unfriendly to ticks by keeping your grass short, bushes trimmed and minimizing mulch or leaf litter.
- Avoid tick breeding grounds like tall grass and brush when you are out on walks.