Heartworm Awareness Month

Heartworm Awareness Month

Heartworms pose a serious risk to Man’s Best Friend. These dangerous worms can make your canine companion very, very sick, and can even be fatal! April is Heartworm Awareness Month, so this is a great time to spread the word about the importance of heartworm prevention. Read on as a local Sayville, NY vet discusses heartworms, and tells you how to keep your beloved pet safe from them.

What Are Heartworms ?

Heartworms are parasites that infest our canine friends’ lungs, heart, and blood vessels. Adult heartworms can grow to be about a foot long. As they mature, they start to affect Fido’s vital organs, and can seriously interfere with his body functions. Left untreated, heartworm infestations can be deadly to Man’s Best Friend.

How Are Heartworms Transmitted?

Heartworms are transmitted from one dog to another by mosquitos. Since heartworms are a danger anywhere there are mosquitos, our furry friends can become infested anywhere. It only takes one bite to infest Fido. The worms are in larval stage when they are transmitted, but once inside a dog, they start growing rapidly.

Signs of Heartworms?

If Fido is bit by an infested mosquito, you probably won’t notice any symptoms right away. As the worms grow, your pet may begin to cough, and could lose his breath easily. Dogs with heartworms also get tired very quickly. When the worms become adults and really take hold, the symptoms will get worse. Fido could cough up blood, faint, or even have a heart attack!


There are treatment options for heartworms, though they can be costly and are not easy for poor Fido. Your canine pal may need to be kept in a kennel during treatment to restrict his movements. He may also have to take some very powerful medicine. In some cases, dogs may also need surgery. The exact treatment needed would depend on several factors, including your dog’s age and the severity of the infestation, so you’d want to check with your vet for specific information.


Today, there are many options for protecting our furry friends from these deadly worms. Simply giving your pet his heartworm prevention will keep your four-legged buddy safe from these horrible parasites. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.

Do you have any questions about your dog’s health or care? We are always happy to help! Contact us, your Sayville, NY animal hospital, anytime.

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