Tulsa Heart-Worm Disease and Prevention
The parasite that causes heart-worm disease is called Dirofilaria immitis, it is a parasitic round worm that is spread from host to host by mosquitoes. The mosquito passes the larval stage of the heart worm to your pet during a blood meal. Once inside the new host the larvae go through several growth stages migrating through your pets blood stream finally lodging in the heart as adults, where they begin to reproduce. The adults living in the heart can cause significant damage to the heart and valves eventually causing heart failure and death.
There are multiple types of mosquitoes that can transmit heart worms, and almost every species of mosquito in Oklahoma is capable of transmitting them. This along with good developmental conditions in our state, puts us in the high risk category for the disease. Some of the species of mosquito that are capable of transmitting heart worms can go through their entire life cycle, from egg to adult feeding stage, within 4 days of 70 to 80 degree weather. Some species have adapted to spread out their life cycle until environmental conditions are ideal to continue development.
Due to Oklahoma’s unpredictable weather and the multiple species of mosquitoes capable of spreading this disease from animal to animal, it is important to test for heart-worm disease annually. Here at Paw Prints Ltd. We take heart worm testing seriously because we care about your pets. We test annually for heart worms when your pet comes in for their annual vaccinations and prior to starting heart worm preventative if pets have missed monthly doses. We carry heart worm preventative monthly tablets for your pets in order to ensure their safety.