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Ask the Vet About Heartworms in Dogs and Cats

Heartworms
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Ask the Vet About Heartworms in Dogs and Cats
Dr. Michael Dym
Dr. Michael Dym
VMD, Veterinarian
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DoctorDym.com

As a practicing veterinarian, Dr. Dym has over 19 years of experience and dedication to enhancing the overall health and well-being of pets. His commitment and passion for pet health continuously drives him to learn more about the art and science of homeopathy through ongoing training and education.

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Date: 12/05/16
Category: Flea & Tick
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Lyme Disease

Question:My Pup Shepard Had Lyme Vaccine With Her First Shots. Then During A Snap Test For Heartworm Meds At 9 Months She Was Diagnosed With Lyme Disease. She Showed No Signs Of Lyme But We Gave Her 30 Days Of Doxycycline. Vet Never Called To Re-schedule A Follow Test So I Called Today, Now That Pup Is 11 Months Old. Vet Said Re-occurrence And Or False Positive, My Concerns I Read About On The Net, Are Not Reliable Information. Pup Is Healthy And Shows No Signs Of Disease. Cost Is No Concern, Should I Pursue Retesting With The More Expensive Test?

Answer:I Personally Only Do These More Expensive Lyme Tests I.e C6 Or Pcr Testing To Lab, Only If Pet Has Clinical Symptoms Of Lyme Disease. Many Dogs Test Positive For Lyme For Long Time And Never Show Symptoms Or Are Actively Infected. It Just Means Prior Exposure. I Personally Dont Like The Lyme Vaccination In Dogs Due To My Concerns Of Autoimmune Reactions In Pets Over Time. A Lyme Vaccination Was Yanked Off Of The Market In People Years Ago For Same Reason. Main Test Your Vet Should Be Doing Is Checking Urine Protein Levels Periodically With Urine Protein/creatinine Ratio To Make Sure That Rare Complication Of Lyme Exposure Does Not Occur Down Road That Is Money Better Spent Then Useless Expensive Tests

Date: 12/01/16
Category: Ear Care
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Glaucoma In My Min Pin

Question:My Min Pin Is 14 Years Old. Absolutely No Health Problems. Heartworm Negative (we've Had Her Since She Was 6 Weeks) Always Had Good Care And Last Vet Check In July 2016 Last Appointment. However, Since Then She Has Went Blind In One Eye And Now Blind In The Other. But, Her Right Eye Is Now Puffing Out And Red. I Tried To Wipe It And She Cried As Soon As I Touched It. Do You Think She Has Glaucoma? Would It Be Cost Effective To Get Her Eye Taken Out At This Age?

Answer:I Would Not Assume Glaucoma Or Any Other Eye Issue. Your Pet Needs Complete Medical Veterinary Exam, Especially A Veterinary Eye Specialist In Your Area To Most Properly Evaluate This Situation

Date: 11/10/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Comparing Dog Heartworm Med

Question:Is Trifexis Recommend As Being Better Than Revolution? If So, Why? I Hear From Friends That Some Vets Do Not Stand Behind Or Sell Revolution Heartworm Meds For Dogs...your Opinion?

Answer:This Is Opinion Based On Vet's Experiences. In My Opinion, I Have Found Revolution Very Effective With Less Digestive Side Effects, Etc Than Trifexis In My Experience And Opinion

Date: 11/10/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Comparing Dog Heartworm Med

Question:Is Trifexis Recommend As Being Better Than Revolution? If So, Why? I Hear From Friends That Some Vets Do Not Stand Behind Or Sell Revolution Heartworm Meds For Dogs...your Opinion?

Answer:Answered Previously

Date: 11/07/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Cat
Topic: Inside Animal

Question:My Cat Lives Inside 100% Of The Time. Would She Still Need Heart Worm Meds?

Answer:I Personally Dont Recommend Monthly Heartworm Meds In Indoor Only Cats, As It Is Rare For Cats To Develop Clinical Signs From Heartworms, Even In Pets That Go Outside.

Date: 11/03/16
Category: Wormer
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Roundworms

Question:Once My Dog Is Worm Free And I Put Them On A Preventative..... Is It Best/safe To Deform My Adult Dog Every 3 Months Even Thought The Dog Will Be On A Monthly Preventative? Thank You For Your Time.

Answer:I Personally Dont Routinely Overworm Dogs Like This For Roundworms. Most Of Time These Worms Occur In Young Puppies And Are Rare In Pets On Monthly Standard Heartworm Meds Which Also Control And Prevent Intestinal Worms As Well In Most Cases.

Date: 10/25/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Refusal To Take Trifexus

Question:Our German Shepherd Is Almost 2 Years Old And Has Been On Trifexis Heartworm Medicine Since We Got Her (4 Months); She Does Not Like To Take The Pill, Can Smell It When I Get Package Out Of The Cabinet, And I Am Afraid She Did Not Take It All Last Month------what Risk Is She At Now In Developing Heartworm If She Did Miss A Dose? Does She Need A Blood Test?

Answer:I Would Not Worry About The One Missed Dose, There Is A Protection Factor In These Pills As They Actually Work For Several More Weeks Then Once Monthly. However, If Your Dog Seems To Be Telling You Through Her Actions That She Does Not Like To Take The Pill, I Would Consider Changing To Another Ie Heartguard Or Interceptor And Do Separate Flea Medicine. In My Experience And Opinion, I Have Found That Dogs That Act Like This With Chewable Meds Are Associating The Pill With Not Feeling Well. Trifexis, While An Effective Medicine, Is Also Very Strong And I Have Seen Some Occasional Sensitive Shepherds Have Reaction To It

Date: 10/23/16
Category: Other
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Liver Disease

Question:Which Heart Worm Medicine Is Safest For A Boston Terrior Dog Who Has Liver Disease And Taking S-adenosyl-l-methionine 200mg Since 2014. I Would Like A Second Opinion Please. She Ate Something Toxic And Was Treated 2014 But Blood Tests Continue To Show Liver Values Still Higher Than Normal But Stable. The Biopsy In 2014 Did Not Show Anything. Vet Said Maybe Needle Gage Was Too Small So Not Enough Tissue Was Taken.

Answer:All Of These Meds Have Potential Liver Toxicity No Matter What So The Old Adage, Pick Your Poison Truly Applies. Heartguard Has Been Around The Longest And May Be Worth A Look. You Can Also Look Into Herbal Heartworm Prevention From Biovance Company On The Website Www.fiestapetdeli.com

Date: 10/09/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Heartgard Weekly For Heartworm Treatment

Question:My Vet Has Prescribed My Dog 1 Heartgard Pill Every Week For The Treatment Of Heartworms. He Was 8 Months Old When We Adopted Him And Found Out That He Has This. What Is The Percentage Rate Of Effectiveness This Cure May Have?

Answer:I Have Not Heard Of Dosing Heartworm Pills Like This. It Is Usually Done Once Monthly. Some Dogs Will Gradually Clear The Infection With This "slow Kill" Way Of Treating The Heartworms, But Is Not As Ideal As The Approved Few Dose Immiticide Treatment That You Can Ask Your Vet About. I Dont Have Percentages On Slow Kill But It Works In Some And Not In Others

Date: 09/12/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Heartworm Medication Requirements

Question:I Am Being Told By The Vet I Just Recently Started Seeing That It Is A Requirement To Have A Physical Along With The Heartworm Blood Test To Get Heartworm Medication. I Have Had Dogs For 24 Years Now And I Have Never Had To Have A Physical And The Blood Test. The Blood Test Was The Only Requirement. Has The Requirements Changed Or Is The Vet Trying To Get More Money Out Of Me?

Answer:The American Veterinary Heartworm Society Does Recommend Annual Testing Of Dogs For Heartworms Before Renewing Medication

Date: 09/06/16
Category: Flea & Tick
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Ivermectin Concerns

Question:I Have A 4 Year Old Male Australian Shepherd. I Am Considering Flea And Tick Prevention, But I Am Concerned With Giving Him Ivermectin. I Know His Breed Can Be Very Sensitive To It And Get Sick. He Already Takes Heartworm Prevention Pills And Seems To Be Doing Okay. What Would You Recommend For Flea Prevention? Personally, I Don't Like The Topicals Because I Myself Have To Be Careful With Meds I Am Around, And Some Of Them Say Not To Touch The Dog After Application, And I Don't Want To Make Myself Sick, Either. Thank You.

Answer:You Can Try Oral Nexguard, Which Should Not Be A Problem, But Check With Your Local Vet. This Product Also Needs Prescription

Date: 08/31/16
Category: Cough
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Kennel Cough... Maybe?

Question:Hello, Our Companion Is Roughly Three Years Old. She Is A Rescued Dog. She Suffers From A Deep Cough That Often Leads To Gagging. The Episodes Typically Last About A Minute And Only Seem To Occur In The Morning Or When She Is Playing. Boo Is Alert And Active. We Have Taken Her To The Vet A Couple Of Times. They Have Checked Her For Heartworm And Other Parasites. All Tests Came Back Negative. Lungs Are Clear. We Have Been Giving Her Antihistamine At The Recommendation Of The Vet. She Thought Boo Might Be Allergic To Something, But This Has Not Helped. She Has Been Suffering From The Issue For Nearly Eight Weeks. The Only Thing We Have Not Tried, Antibiotics. Any Guidance Would Be Greatly Appreciated. Thank You. Anil

Answer:May Be Worth A Broad Spectrum Antibiotic Trial With A Prescription Medication Like Doxycycline Or Baytril, Which Your Vet May Choose To Prescribe. You May Want To Ask For A Course Of The Anti Cough Antiallergy Medication Known As Temaril P For A Few Weeks, Which Also May Help And I Would Consider Worming For Hidden Worms With Panacure C From 1800petmeds, , As Parasites Are Not Always Found On Stool Check If Signs Persist Or Worsen, I Would Recommend X Rays Of Trachea And Chest, As Well As Consider Possibility Of Asking For Referral To Vet Specialist Internist In Your Area Who Can Do Transtracheal Wash Or Scoping Of Airways If Needed

Date: 08/28/16
Category: Other
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Dog Lung Worm

Question:Hi, Im Really Worried. I Recently Got A Pug Puppy And I Was Letting Him Go The Toilet Outside. He Always Picks Something Up For Me To Chase Him, I Noticed He Picked Something Up And Went Near Him An Got It, It Was A Leaf But It Had A Slug On & I Dont Know If He Has Caught Anything From This. Im Really Worried. Can You Help?

Answer:I Would Not Worry. Make Sure Pet Is On Good Once Monthly Heartworm Medication Which Also Treats And Prevents Other Worms.

Date: 08/28/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Heartworm

Question:In The Western Half Of Washington State, We Do Not Have A Heartworm Problem. It Is Only If We Travel With Out Pets Out Of This Region That We Need To Get Heartworm Medicine. So, Unless We Travel Again, We Do Not Need That Medicine For Schumacher Or Wendy.

Answer:Not Sure Your Question. I Would Use Heartworm Medication Monthly During The Areas That You Travel Which Have Heartworms In Warmer Seasons

Date: 08/26/16
Category: Heartworm Medicine
Pet Type: Dog
Topic: Heartworm Causing Seizures

Question:Border Collie / Australian Cattle Mix Had Seizures Within A Day Of Giving Her Comboguard (spinosad, Milbemycin, Oxime). Vet Switched Her To Quadriguard (ivermectin, Pyrentel Pamoate, Praziquantel) And Seizures Went Away. Also Switched To 1800petmeds Brand Iverhart Max (ivermectin, Pyrantel Pamoate, Praziquantel) And Still No Seizures. Now, Iverhart Max Apparently Isn't Manufacturing Anymore. So What Do I Switch To? I've Read About Collies Having A Multi Drug Gene Mutation Issue, But It Seems Ivermectin Is The Main Drug That Dogs With The Gene Problem Interact To. I've Also Read That Spinosad Heartworm Drugs Can Be Too Much On Their System, So Perhaps Switching Off Comboguard Originally Into The Quadriguard Topical Flea Simple Guard Was The True Reason Seizures Went Away? I'm Just At A Loss As To What To Do Here. Thank You!

Answer:You May Want To Try Just Interceptor Without The Spinosad. You Can Also Try Herbal Heartworm Prevention Meds. See The Product On The Website Www.fiestapetdeli.com Which Is Made By Biovance

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