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TMCNet:  Heartworm Prevention Always in Season Says American Heartworm Society

[January 31, 2014]

Heartworm Prevention Always in Season Says American Heartworm Society

WILMINGTON, Del. --(Business Wire)--

The American Heartworm Society reminds pet owners to stay in the heartworm-prevention habit, no matter what the season. Contrary to what owners may think, heartworm disease is a year-round threat.

Here are the facts:

Fact #1: Pesky pests pay no attention to the calendar. Knowing that mosquitoes spread heartworms, some dog and cat owners mistakenly assume protection is only needed during warm-weather months. The truth is that mosquitoes can survive long after the weather turns cool by seeking out protected pockets of heat and humidity called microclimates. Meanwhile, because medications work by killing early-stage heartworm larvae that have already infected pets, prevention that stops when the temperature drops can leave pets unprotected when they need it most.

Fact #2: Mosquitoes know when to come in from the cold. When weather changes prompt pets to spend more time inside, mosquitoes follow, keeping the possibility of heartworm transmission alive. This means that so-called "indoor" pets are as much at risk as their more outoorsy counterparts.


Fact #3: Staying on schedule with heartworm prevention keeps pets safe. On-again, off-again heartworm protection is risky. Missing just one dose of medication-or giving it late-can result in heartworm infection, which has no approved treatment in cats and is both costly and complicated to treat in dogs. It also eliminates the guesswork of trying to figure out when and if the pet is at risk of heartworm transmission. Finally, people are creatures of habit. It's much easier to remember to give a pet preventive medication year-round than it is to do it part-time.

Heartworm disease can be deadly for pets, so prevention is essential. Giving heartworm preventives year-round is one of the easiest and most important steps owners can take to keep their pets healthy

The American Heartworm Society is a non-profit organization whose mission is to lead the public in the understanding of heartworm disease. Through their "Think 12" program, they remind owners to give their pets heartworm preventives 12 months a year and test pets for heartworm every 12 months. Owners can learn more about heartworm protection for their pets by checking out the resources at heartwormsociety.org.


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