We've had a very mild winter and mosquitoes survived in places like barns, sheds, under decks and other protected areas. Based on recommendations from the American Heartworm Society, the Companion Animal Parasite Council and Colorado State University, all dogs should be started on heartworm prevention (Heartgard Plus) NOW and remain on it year round.
Heartgard Plus also treats intestinal parasites. These parasites are carried in the stool of animals and can be picked up in the parks, green belts, walking paths or any area frequented by dogs and wildlife. Intestinal parasites can be passed to humans and cause serious illness.
Last year alone, there were over 10,000 cases of intestinal parasites diagnosed in humans in this county. Ask us for more information on zoonotic diseases and how they affect people.
With the mass influx of people coming to Colorado from around the country, Colorado is now considered a high risk state for Heartworm Disease. A large number of Heartworm positive dogs come into our state from the Gulf area.
Additionally, a high percentage of coyotes, foxes and wolves carry Heartworm Disease. These dogs and wildlife create a larger reservoir of Heartworm Disease to be passed by mosquitoes to our native dogs. Pets also traveling more frequently with their owners increasing their chances of being in heavy Heartworm infested areas.
Heartworm Disease is starting to be seen in cats as well. We can do blood testing for your cat and dog and get them started on a preventative here. There is a very informative article on Heartworm Disease on our website under Dog Care that we suggest you read for more details.