Parasite Prevention

Are Fleas, Ticks & Heartworms Causing Trouble for Your Pet?

The word “parasites” is enough to make anyone cringe, and for good reason. These sneaky pests are invasive, unsanitary, and liable to spread diseases to pets and their families. Heartworms, fleas, and ticks are especially a concern for pets, who are unaware of the dangers posed by these nasty critters. If your pet is not currently taking preventatives or missed several doses during the year, their risk of becoming infected is much higher.

Common Diseases Spread by Parasites

Heartworms, fleas, and ticks are found just about anywhere in North America, making parasite prevention a must for every dog and cat regardless of their lifestyle.

The most common diseases we see in pets include:

  • Heartworm disease (carried by mosquitoes)
  • Lyme disease (carried by ticks)
  • Anaplasmosis and ehrlichiosis
  • Flea allergic dermatitis

These are just a few examples of conditions that pets can experience if they come into close contact with parasites. There are many others too, including roundworm, tapeworm, hookworm infestations, and giardiasis.

Are Any of These Deadly?

Heartworm disease and Lyme disease are major health concerns, especially for pets with weaker immune systems.

Heartworm Disease

Refers to a condition spread by female mosquitoes. When a mosquito ingests the tiny early-stage roundworm larvae from an infected host, they carry these parasites for about two weeks. When the mosquito bites another animal, the larvae enter the bloodstream and begin their journey to the animal’s lungs and heart. They take root around these organs when they become mature adults and, if left untreated, can grow in number, blocking the blood vessels and arteries, which in turn can lead to death.

Lyme Disease

In addition to preventive medications, you should thoroughly check your pets for fleas and ticks on a daily basis if they’ve been outdoors. Although fleas and ticks can be anywhere on your pet’s body, they prefer posting up near the head, ears, neck and paws. You can spot evidence of fleas if you notice little black specks that resemble pepper or bits of dirt.

Most intestinal parasites such as roundworm, tapeworm, hookworm, and whipworm can be eliminated with proper treatment and parasite preventatives.

Year-Round Prevention Guarantees Protection

Keeping to a schedule and giving your pet their monthly (or tri-monthly, depending on the medication) preventatives is key to making sure that parasites are never a problem for your pet. Missing even one dose can significantly increase your pet’s risk of infection.

For convenience, auto ship your preventatives from our online store so you never miss a dose. Shipping is free!

Parasite Prevention in Michigan City, IN

Prevention is always the best treatment! We carry many different types of flea, tick and heartworm preventive and your Michigan City Animal Hospital veterinarian can help you choose which one is right for your pet. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call us at 219-872-4191.