Heartworm is a parasite infection that occurs when a mosquito carrying microscopic heartworm larvae bites your cat or dog. The larvae enter through the bite wound and settle in your pet’s tissues. Immature worms then enter a blood vessel and are carried to the arteries in the lung where they cause an inflammatory reaction.
Most worms die at this stage, causing even more inflammation. The worms that progress to the adult stage can live undetected for a couple of years, but when the adult worms die, the inflammation can be severe enough to cause death in your pet. Symptoms of heartworms in cats and dogs include coughing, difficulty breathing, lethargy, decreased appetite or vomiting. Blindness, collapse and even sudden death are possible.
It’s important to know that wherever dogs are considered to be at risk for heartworms, cats are at risk as well. This is why it is so important for all cats to receive heartworm prevention year-round too. We carry several flea and heartworm preventions that are easy to apply and very affordable. Be sure to download the Lafayette Veterinary Care Center app to receive reminders to apply your pet’s preventative every 30 days.
Visit us online: www.lafayettevets.com