Heartworm Prevention For Dogs


Most dogs will have worms/parasites of one kind or another during their lifetime, and puppies are especially at risk.

While intestinal worms can create problems, they're generally not severe and are pretty easy to treat. Heartworms are quite different.. and definitely dangerous.

Symptoms of heartworm infestation usually don't appear until your pup/dog is very ill, and left untreated it can be fatal.

If you catch the disease early enough it can be treated successfully - but the treatment is long, expensive and complicated.

That's why prevention is the key to protecting your pet!

How To Prevent Heartworm In Dogs

Heartworms have a long life-cycle, and early symptoms are pretty much non-existent, so prevention is the only way to really keep your pup safe.

You should start your puppy on a heartworm preventative medication as soon as he's 8 weeks old.

Lots of vets give a free sample of Heartgard for pups at their first puppy check up, after that it's up to you.

These medicines need to be given once a month (without fail), during mosquito season.

It's best to start one month before mosquitoes appear and ending one month after the season ends.



About Heartworm Prevention Products

If your pup is 6 - 7 months or older, and hasn't been on regular, monthly heartworm medicines...

DO NOT give him any heartworm preventative

....... without having your veterinarian run some tests first.

IMPORTANT...... 

If your pup is 6 - 7 months or older, and hasn't been on regular, monthly heartworm medicines...

DO NOT give him any heartworm preventative

....... without having your veterinarian run some tests first.

The most popular and commonly used medications for heartworm prevention are very safe. Bad reactions are rare when the medicines are given in the recommended, prescribed dosages.

Some breeds are extra-sensitive to Ivermectin (the active ingredient in many of these products).

This makes them super-sensitive to certain drugs and even a small dose can be toxic enough to kill them.

Seriously bad reactions are more likely in dogs that belong to the 'Collie' family due to a breed-specific gene mutation.This category includes breeds such as:

  • Border Collies

  • Shetland Sheepdogs

  • Old English Sheepdogs

  • Australian Shepherds

  • Bearded Collies

  • Collie mixes and other Collie or Shepherd breeds

If your pup is a collie, sheepdog or a mix that includes either of these, you absolutely must talk with your veterinarian about what type of heartworm preventative to use.

A newer heartworm prevention product called Advantage Multi is thought to be safe for these breeds, but listen to your own vet's advice as to whether or not your pup/dog should take it.

Symptoms of a bad reaction to Ivomectin.....

These can include dilated pupils, tremors, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of co-ordination, collapse.

If you notice ANY of these, get your dog emergency veterinary help immediately!



Heartworm Medications

There are a range of products you can use to protect your puppy or dog from contracting this dangerous disease.

Some medications simply prevent heartworm, others also prevent or kill other parasites such as roundworms, hookworms, tapeworms, whipworms or fleas.

These ALL need to be given, or prescribed, by a licensed veterinarian - they are NOT available over the counter. This is mainly because giving heart worm medicine to a dog who already has an active infestation could prove fatal. So the regulations are in place to protect your pet.

Here's a quick look at the most popular heartworm preventatives available....



icon icon

Heartgard icon

Information:

Active Ingredient - Ivermectin

Beef flavored chewable

Suitable for puppies and dogs over 6 weeks of age

No weight restrictions

Effective Against:

  • Heartworms


icon icon

Heartgard Plus icon

Information:

Active Ingredients - Ivermectin & Pyrantel

Beef flavored chewable

For puppies & dogs over 6 weeks of age

No weight restrictions

Effective Against:

  • Heartworms
  • Roundworms
  • Hookworms


icon icon

Iverhart Plus (Chewables) icon

Information:

Active Ingredient - Ivermectin & Pyrantel

Pork liver flavored chewable

For puppies & dogs over 6 weeks of age.

No weight restrictions

Effective Against:

  • Heartworms
  • Roundworms
  • Hookworms


icon icon

Iverhart Max icon

Information:

Active Ingredients - Ivermectin, Pyrantel Pamoate, Praziquantel

Pork liver flavored chewable

For puppies & dogs over 8 weeks of age

For puppies & dogs who weigh at least 6lbs

Effective Against:

  • Heartworms
  • Roundworms
  • Hookworms
  • Tapeworms


icon icon

Trifexis Chewables icon

Information:

Active Ingredients - Spinosad & Milbemycin Oxime

Beef flavored chewable

For puppies & dogs over 8 weeks of age

For puppies & dogs weighing at least 5lbs

* Considered to be safe for collies & herding breeds, consult your vet for info.

Effective Against:

  • Heartworms
  • Roundworms
  • Hookworms
  • Whipworms
  • Fleas


icon icon

Advantage Multi icon

Information:

Active Ingredients - Imidacloprid & Moxidectin

TOPICAL APPLICATION

For puppies & dogs over 7 weeks of age

For puppies & dogs weighing at least 3lbs

* Considered to be safe for collies & herding breeds, consult your vet for info.

Effective Against:

  • Heartworms
  • Roundworms
  • Hookworms
  • Whipworms
  • Fleas


The above information should help you decide which heartworm prevention product is best for your puppy or dog - but your own veterinarian is the expert!

He will recommend what he feels is best for your pet and as he's the professional it's worth taking his advice :)



Related Pages......



› Heartworm Prevention


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