Heartworm disease is a serious illness in dogs and cats. It’s caused by microscopic worms that live in your pet’s heart, blood vessels, and lungs. Heartworm disease causes the heart to enlarge and eventually fail.
Heartworms are spread when an infected mosquito bites a dog or cat with heartworms. The worm eggs get into the bloodstream of your pet through the bite wound. These larvae can travel through their body until they settle in their lungs or heart where they will stay for 1-2 years before maturing into adult worms that produce more larvae which circulate back into the blood stream again to infect another mosquito when it bites them again!
It can be treated with Ivermectin, but precautions need to be taken first.
Ivermectin is a medication that can be used to treat heartworm disease. It is given as an injection to dogs, but it does not kill the adult heartworms. Instead, it paralyzes them so that they stop moving and die within about two weeks of being treated with ivermectin.
While there are some precautions you should take when administering Ivermectin to your dog, if administered properly and safely it can be effective at treating canine heartworms.
A dog’s diagnosis of heartworm disease should include a thorough blood work-up.
When your dog is diagnosed with heartworm disease, a thorough blood work-up will be conducted. This includes a complete blood count (CBC) and a chemistry panel. The CBC measures the levels of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets in the bloodstream.
Your vet can tell you if your dog is at risk for adverse effects from Ivermectin.
If your dog is at a higher risk for adverse effects, such as seizures or liver disease, your vet will be able to tell you. If your dog has a history of seizures or liver problems, they may be more susceptible to treatment-related side effects.
Determining your dog’s diet during treatment can help ease her GI side effects.
If your dog is on a prescription diet, you should continue to feed it. If not, it’s worth mentioning that some dogs suffer from heartworm disease even after they’ve been treated and are back to normal. This condition can cause GI side effects like diarrhea and vomiting as the dog’s body tries to expel the dead worms from its system.
A bland diet consisting of low-fat meat or fish with rice or potatoes may help reduce these symptoms and make your dog feel better during this time.
The medication will be administered intravenously at the clinic.
Once you’ve been diagnosed with heartworm disease, your veterinarian will prescribe ivermectin to help treat it. The medication will be administered intravenously at the clinic.
An intravenous (IV) injection is a method of administering medications through the bloodstream directly into a vein using a needle and syringe. It’s important to note that this procedure cannot be performed at home without proper training from a veterinarian or veterinary technician.
The medicine travels through the bloodstream and reaches any areas where adult fleas are present – including their eggs, larvae, and pupae – killing them off within 24 hours of administration.
After the treatment, your dog will need to stay in the clinic for observation.
After the treatment, your dog will need to stay in the clinic for observation. The reason for this is because it is possible that side effects can occur with Ivermectin use and these side effects can be serious. You may also notice some changes in your pet’s behavior after the injection.
Other reasons why monitoring is important include:
- To monitor for adverse effects of ivermectin on dogs (they are rare but could happen)
- To monitor effectiveness and safety of ivermectin administration
In short, there are several factors that need to be considered before starting a dog on Ivermectin treatment. If you’re concerned that your dog may have heartworms, the first thing to do is schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to discuss treatment options. The prognosis is much better if the disease is caught early, so make sure you call while your furry friend is still healthy!