Heartworm Treatment From Hilltop Animal Hospital

If you live in or near Fuquay Varina, NC we welcome you to take your pet to Hilltop Animal Hospital to get a heartworm check and preventative treatment by a qualified veterinarian. Heartworms can kill your animals. That is so sad because it is preventable. However, if you neglect them and do not get them the proper veterinary checks at the animal hospital, a heartworm infestation can begin and then grow until your beloved pet dies from it.


Heartworm Infestation of Your Pet

Heartworm infestation comes from mosquito bites that pass the larvae of a worm called Dirofilaria immitis from one infected animal to another. It is very easy to spread to dogs and less likely to spread to cats. It is a risk in North Carolina during the hot humid summer months when mosquitoes are so prevalent.

The adult worms in an infected animal give birth to larvae, which are tiny eggs. These larvae move through the bloodstream and are taken up when a mosquito bites and draws blood from the animal. Then, when the mosquito bites another animal, the larvae pass to that pet. 

They move from the skin and muscles and then flow through the bloodstream to lodge in the heart, where they grow into adult worms to repeat the life cycle.

Symptoms of Heartworm Infections of Your Pet

These nasty parasites can infect an animal and there may be no apparent symptoms for possibly quite a long time. The maturity of the worms to become adults in the arteries of the heart takes about six to seven months. During this time, before the worms become adults your pet will not normally show any signs of being infected.

Once the worms become adults they can be detected by your vet with a blood test. This is why it is important to have a heartworm test every six months and use preventative medicine, especially during mosquito season.

Even when a pet is infested with adult worms, at first they may not show any signs. However, once the infestation progresses the symptoms include fainting, coughing blood, extreme loss of weight, and then deadly heart failure.

Veterinary Care for Heartworm

Prevention of heartworm is the best care. Once an infestation is detected, then aggressive treatment is necessary that includes many injections to kill adult heartworms, an antibiotic such as doxycycline, and a steroid such as prednisone to reduce bad side effects. Then, there is an additional treatment to prevent the young heartworms from growing into adults.

The treatment has a high success rate of up to 98%; however, it may take many months to get rid of the heartworms completely. It is far better to prevent heartworms in the first place.

Call Hilltop Animal Hospital Today!

To get heartworm care, see your veterinarian at Hilltop Animal Hospital serving Fuquay Varina, North Carolina, and the surrounding area.


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