All dogs are exposed to mosquitos that can carry heartworm disease. Heartworm disease is a serious, and potentially fatal, disease that can infect dogs of any age. It is caused by foot-long worms (heartworms) that live in the heart, lungs and associated blood vessels of affected pets, causing severe lung disease, heart failure and damage to other organs in the body. Heartworm disease affects dogs, cats and ferrets, but heartworms also live in other mammal species, including wolves, coyotes, and foxes. Because wild species such as foxes and coyotes live in proximity to many urban areas here in St. Louis, they are considered important carriers of the disease. For more information about heartworm disease, check out the resources at the American Heartworm Society.
St. Louis dogs are at significant risk for heartworm disease and we treat several dogs each year. Treatment is extensive, painful and costly, and much easier to prevent!
We recommend keeping your pet on preventatives, like Interceptor Plus, ProHeart 6 or ProHeart 12 year round.
All puppies are sent home with a complimentary dose of Interceptor Plus– a monthly, oral chewable heartworm and intestinal parasite preventative.
We have chosen Interceptor Plus as our go-to for most patients, because it is the most comprehensive product for heartworm and intestinal parasites- it covers two more additional intestinal parasites than other preventatives like Heartgard. It gives your pet protection against heartworm disease, roundworms, hookworms, whipworms and tapeworms. However, we will work with you to determine the best lifelong prevention based on your pet’s lifestyle, risk assessment, taste preferences and convenience options you might choose.
Have trouble remembering to give that monthly pill? We also offer ProHeart 6 and ProHeart 12– an injectable heartworm preventative that lasts 6 months for patients over 6 months (ProHeart 6) and ProHeart 12, which lasts 12 months and is available for dogs over 12 months of age. We even remind you when it’s time to come in for the next injection!
In some cases, oral preventatives may not recommended for your pet (i.e. those with a food allergy or reaction to oral preventatives). For those pets, we recommend Advantage Multi- a monthly topical heartworm, flea, and intestinal parasite preventative. NOTE: Advantage Multi does NOT cover ticks and additional preventatives may be necessary.
Can’t make it into the clinic to pick up your preventatives? All of our preventatives can also be found on our online pharmacy and shipped directly to your door!