How Do I Know If My Dog Has Heart worms?
Heartworms are parasites that can cause serious diseases in your dog. It is important to know the signs and symptoms of heartworms in order to detect and treat them as soon as possible.
Signs and Symptoms of Heartworm Infection
If your dog has heartworms, you might notice the following signs and symptoms:
- Coughing or shortness of breath
- Lethargy or reduced activity
- Weight loss or decreased appetite
- Exercise intolerance
- Lack of energy
Your dog might also develop an enlarged heart or liver, as well as fluid build-up in the chest, abdomen or legs. If your dog is showing any of the signs and symptoms listed above, it is important to take him to the vet as soon as possible.
Diagnosis of Heartworm Infection
Your vet will be able to diagnose heartworm infection through blood tests, chest X-rays and ultrasound examinations of your dog’s heart. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, your vet will create a treatment plan for your dog.
Prevention of Heartworm Infection
The best way to protect your dog from heartworm infection is to give him a monthly preventive medication. Your vet can help you choose the right product for your pet, based on his age, medical condition and lifestyle.
You should also have your dog tested regularly, as certain heartworm medications cannot prevent re-infection.
Heartworms can cause serious diseases in your dog, so it is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms, as well as ways to prevent and treat them. If you suspect your dog is infected, take him to the vet immediately.