Preventing those uninvited guests!
The longer days and milder weather of spring make long walks and outdoor exploration a favourite activity for many pet owners, especially in forested areas, trails and parks.
In Ontario, ticks and lyme disease have been on the rise. People are more familiar with Lyme disease affecting humans due to its long list of serious symptoms. For our pets it is known as a silent disease as those symptoms aren’t always as noticeable. Symptoms in our pets include: lethargy, joint pain, and loss of appetite. The difficult part about treating ticks and lyme disease is that bites aren’t always visible, which makes regular check-ups with your veterinarian important.
Heartworm disease isn’t as common as lyme disease is in Ontario, but the need to protect your pets is just as important. Heartworm disease is a blood parasite that can live in your dogs heart..... a dog’s heart is a place for love not worms! Heartworm is spread from infected pets to uninfected pets through mosquitoes. Treatment for heartworm disease is available however, the methods are costly and are not without potential complications. Prevention is the key! It is important to have your pet tested yearly for heartworm to ensure preventative medication can be used. If the test is negative, your veterinarian will recommend a preventative medication that will destroy any immature heartworms transmitted by mosquitoes and stop the cycle of the disease.
We want to help you enjoy the outdoors, whether it be a national park, hiking trail, or your own backyard, with a peace of mind that your pet is protected. Here are some tips to help prevent and treat the pests of the warm weather.
The best way to protect is to prevent!
- Oral and topical preventatives are available which help kill ticks, fleas, and heartworm that are on your pet
- Staying away from areas that have a large deer population as they can carry the ticks that transmit Lyme disease
- Remove items from your yard that may act as a home for ticks such as debris, brush, weeds and leaves
- Stay on marked paths and keep pets leashed when walking through wooded areas
***Remember to always do a full body check of your pet and yourself after walks. Pay extra attention to the areas around the head, neck and paws of your pet. A tick feels like a small bump on the skin.
- Remove ticks promptly at home or bring them to your vet to prevent the spread of disease (How to remove ticks)
- If you suspect your pet has been infected, call your veterinarian immediately
- If possible, keep your pet hydrated and fed, but don’t administer any medication
For the month of April, every patient that comes in for their lyme/heartworm/tick test will be entered into a draw to win a free box of Revolution!
Please contact the staff for more details.