Does anyone else here not use heartworm medicine?

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Nicki
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Does anyone else here not use heartworm medicine?

Postby Nicki » Mon Feb 11, 2008 9:44 pm

Not looking for a debate, I realize the importance of keeping our pets healthy and the different ways we all go about it. :) Just wondering if anyone else tests 2x a year instead of giving meds.

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Rinalia
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Postby Rinalia » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:21 pm

Mine are tested once a year. They are on heartgard during mosquito season but not year-round.

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Postby innocence621 » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:21 pm

I use Ivermectin all year round...here in Florida I will not chance it.

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hwillm1977
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Postby hwillm1977 » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:45 pm

Ours are on heartgard when it's warm enough for bugs, but right now everything is frozen solid.

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Postby *leenie* » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:49 pm

Emma has never been on it Because there are no bugs where we live. Ginger was on it but Kurt stopped it when funds got a little low and never got her back on it. But When Emma and I move to Illinois, she will be on it during bug season.

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Sarah
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Postby Sarah » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:50 pm

I don't typically keep my dogs on HW preventative, because HW is so incredibly rare in my area. If there was HW, I would give the preventative, though. I wouldn't try to use testing as preventative medicine, it's easier to prevent the infestation than to treat it, and my dogs remaining healthy enough to compete in agility is important to me.

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Postby BrokenAquarian » Mon Feb 11, 2008 10:56 pm

I live right next to a creek and I have a small pond in my front yard - so I keep my dogs on HeartGuard + all year round.

It's easier to remember once a month than having to remember to start up a few months after winter break :)

Plus, the buggers sometimes surprise you and show up sooner than expected.

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rednoseErnie
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Postby rednoseErnie » Mon Feb 11, 2008 11:06 pm

I have never used it. I have never had a vet suggest it.

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dragynflye
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Postby dragynflye » Mon Feb 11, 2008 11:07 pm

it doesn't get warm enough where i live for heartworms to be an issue.

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Postby FransterDoo » Mon Feb 11, 2008 11:19 pm

we test once a year and use preventative every 6 weeks during the summer. We only do this for Franny since she has a heart condition. The boys aren't regularly tested or treated.

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Dizzy
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Postby Dizzy » Tue Feb 12, 2008 1:51 am

I test once per year and don't have them on a monthly treatment. The vet I saw (once) when I first got to minneapolis was shocked and horified that I did this-she said I should have all my critters-even the indoor cats-on preventative all year round plus test twice a year.

I think she just wanted my money. :oops:

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Sarah
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Postby Sarah » Tue Feb 12, 2008 2:35 am

Dizzy wrote:I test once per year and don't have them on a monthly treatment. The vet I saw (once) when I first got to minneapolis was shocked and horified that I did this-she said I should have all my critters-even the indoor cats-on preventative all year round plus test twice a year.

I think she just wanted my money. :oops:


Minneapolis is within the region in which the infection rates of HW are up to 45%. (along the Missisippi River and it's major tributaries is one of the areas with the highest rates of infection). You could not pay me enough money to live there and not have my pets on HW preventative.

I'm not suprised that the vet was shocked and horrified. She's probably seen a lot of sick animals. Probably euthanized some who's owners couldn't afford the (rather expensive) treatment. Trying to keep the dogs calm so they don't die while the arsenic compound is killing the adult worms is kind of scary.

Cats don't present with HW infection as often as dogs, but are likely to be much sicker, and don't take treatment very well.
Wikipedia article on HW- quite accurate info

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Postby Lanolar » Tue Feb 12, 2008 5:31 am

Sarah wrote:
Dizzy wrote:I test once per year and don't have them on a monthly treatment. The vet I saw (once) when I first got to minneapolis was shocked and horified that I did this-she said I should have all my critters-even the indoor cats-on preventative all year round plus test twice a year.

I think she just wanted my money. :oops:


Minneapolis is within the region in which the infection rates of HW are up to 45%. (along the Missisippi River and it's major tributaries is one of the areas with the highest rates of infection). You could not pay me enough money to live there and not have my pets on HW preventative.

I'm not suprised that the vet was shocked and horrified. She's probably seen a lot of sick animals. Probably euthanized some who's owners couldn't afford the (rather expensive) treatment. Trying to keep the dogs calm so they don't die while the arsenic compound is killing the adult worms is kind of scary.

Cats don't present with HW infection as often as dogs, but are likely to be much sicker, and don't take treatment very well.
Wikipedia article on HW- quite accurate info


Correct, we see a LOT of heartworm POS tests up here.

Dizzy please reconsider having your buddy on heartguard. Its simply not worth the risk.

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Misskiwi67
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Postby Misskiwi67 » Tue Feb 12, 2008 7:07 am

The treatment for heartworm is TWO injections of arsenic. It can and does result in the death of the dog often enough that I would NEVER want my dogs to go through treatment. The treatment is only slightly less deadly than the disease.

Its not worth it... if there is ANY heartworm in your area, use preventative.

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Postby PitFriend » Tue Feb 12, 2008 7:45 am

Dizzy wrote:I test once per year and don't have them on a monthly treatment. The vet I saw (once) when I first got to minneapolis was shocked and horified that I did this-she said I should have all my critters-even the indoor cats-on preventative all year round plus test twice a year.

I think she just wanted my money. :oops:



As far as the cats go, indoor cats are more vulnerable to heartworms than cats that spend their lives primarily outdoors. Outdoor cats tend to build up a resistance to heartworms over their lifetimes, but indoor cats don't... so when mosquitos carrying HW larvae come into the home it's more likely that the cats indoors will contract heartworms. So I know it seems counterintuitive, but indoor cats in a moderate/high risk area should absolutely be on a preventative.


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