April is National Heartworm Awareness Month! Our veterinarians at All Pets often get the question, “Why does my dog need a heartworm test?” The heartworm is a parasite that transmits through mosquitoes and get’s into your pet’s bloodstream. Once there, it can clog the arteries and damage the heart. These health threats can also harm your dog’s lungs. Therefore, the heartworm test is an essential part of any checkup to ensure your dog’s overall health.
Heartworm disease is a serious and likely fatal disease among pets in the United States and many other parts of the world. It is caused by worms that live in the heart, lungs and associated blood vessels of affected pets. These foot-long worms can cause severe lung disease, heart disease and damage to other organs. This disease is most commonly known in dogs and cats. It can also live in many mammal species including wolves, coyotes, foxes, sea lions and, although rarely, in humans. With wild animals like coyotes and foxes now living closer in proximity to many cities, they are thought to be important carriers of heartworm disease.
Spread by infected mosquitoes, heartworm is progressively being perceived as a hidden reason for health issues in local cats. Regardless of its name, heartworm essentially causes lung disease in cats. Prevention is an essential step toward any sort of improvement in the health of felines living in territories thickly populated by mosquitoes, and prevention techniques ought to be talked about with a veterinarian.