Heartworms, fleas, and ticks can be great trouble for our beloved animals and ourselves. However, we are lucky because there are so many great products available to help protect everyone!
Flea and tick protection is unique in that, unlike heartworm prevention, no veterinarian prescription is required. There are several forms of liquid that you apply to your pet’s skin. These are usually applied once a month and can be given at the same time as the heartworm prevention. Due to much less rigorous or absent testing, the over the counter versions of these have been known to cause severe irritation or even neurologic conditions and tend not to be as effective in a flea or tick infested areas. Flea and tick prevention is also available as chewable tablets or treats. Some can be given once a month while others may last as long as three months. Flea collars and home remedy options generally don’t work very well and aside from a few exceptions, should not be relied upon solely to protect your pet.
Most veterinary clinics offer heartworm preventatives that are either given by mouth once a month or as an injection every six months. In addition, these medications also help to deworm many intestinal parasites your pet may have picked up!
When a pet doesn’t use these preventative products year round, they are put at risk to get Heartworm, flea, and tick diseases. Heartworm disease, from mosquitos, causes heart and lung failure and eventual death. Aside from being irritating, fleas can cause serious conditions like plague, cat-scratch fever, and anemia. Ticks are known to spread Lyme disease and many other life-threatening diseases.
Preventive care is so important for the health of your pet. It is hard to know which products are best for your pet. Your veterinarian will be able to give you guidance on the best choice for you and your pet.