The Importance of Pet Parasite Prevention
Did you know that some parasites transmit disease? In fact, some of the parasites themselves are the disease! Far from a simple annoyance, parasites can be dangerous and even deadly. To keep your pet protected, we emphasize consistent parasite prevention for your pet from puppy and kittenhood to old age. Yet, even with timely administration of the appropriate preventative, a parasite can still slip through the cracks. That’s why we also perform regular fecal exams, disease screenings, and heartworm tests (for dogs) to ensure your pet is parasite-free. Or, if they do have parasites, we can address the problem right away before the problem gets worse.
The Dangers of Fleas and Ticks
Fleas and ticks are two of the most common parasites that threaten pets. They both feed off your pet’s blood, and fleas even live in your pet’s fur breeding, laying eggs, and maturing. Ticks on the other hand are found in tall grass and wooded areas. They’ll cling to your pet as they pass by, take their bloodmeal, and then fall off, sometimes after a day or two. Both fleas and ticks pose dangers to your pet. Fleas can cause dermatitis if your pet is sensitive, and they can also transmit tapeworms, an intestinal parasite. Meanwhile, ticks are known for their tick-borne illnesses including Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, and Ehrlichia, among others. Flea and tick preventatives greatly reduce your pet’s risk of contracting one of these dangerous diseases.
Keeping Heartworm at Bay
Heartworms are internal parasites that are transferred to your pet through the bite of an infected mosquito. They travel through the bloodstream and lodge themselves in the heart and blood vessels of the lungs, where they grow and mature. Dogs are typical hosts for heartworms, but cats, while atypical hosts, can sometimes contract them, too. In the case of dogs, treatment for heartworm disease is costly and risky, while for cats, there is no effective treatment. For those reasons, prevention is vital and can even save your cat’s life. Not to mention, prevention is far less costly than treatment!
Stay Up-to-Date with Parasite Preventatives
Many of the most effective, trusted brands of parasite preventatives require a prescription from your veterinarian. When you bring your pet in for their yearly wellness exam, we can reassess their risk factors and prescribe the preventative that will suit you and your pet best.