Welcome to Heartworm.com. The purpose of this site is to provide high value information about the diagnosis, prevention and treatment of heartworm disease. While this is an old enemy, there are many new and exciting therapies and even surgery to help you and your pet. Please feel free to sign up and ask questions or comment. We would love to hear your “Heartworm Story.”
All the best,
Dr. Steven Garner
What are Heartworms?
Heartworms are parasites transmitted by mosquitoes. Heartworm infection can kill dogs and cats. Heartworm is a nematode worm (Dirofilaria immitis) that lives inside blood vessels in the lungs of infected animals.
In severe infections the adult heartworms can even be found living inside the heart. Large numbers of tiny heartworm larvae can be transmitted by a single mosquito. This means that a fatal infection can be caused by only one infected mosquito bite.
Heartworm disease not only affects dogs and cats but also ferrets, sea lions, foxes, wolves, and other canids. Even humans can be affected by heartworm bearing mosquitoes. Mosquito bites containing heartworm larvae will cause an extra large swelling compared to normal mosquito bites. This indicates the human immune system battling against infection. Luckily, heartworms do not fully develop in humans.
Studies of dogs in the Southern US have shown that 85% of dogs not on prevention will develop heartworm infection. Heartworm infections are worldwide. Male dogs have a four times greater risk for heartworms than females. Large breeds are more commonly affected than small breeds. Hair coat length is not a factor. Therefore, small indoor, long haired dogs are at risk as well as any outdoor dog.
Why is it so important to help your pet avoid a heartworm infection?
See Dr. Garner save the life of this pet suffering from heartworms.
Download the coupon Dr. Garner mentioned in his “Life is Good Magazine” article here!