When I was a young girl, I lost a furry family member to an easily preventable disease, heartworm disease. We adopted Sasha when I was about 10 years old. She was a Chow puppy (I can’t recall how old she was) and she was the fuzziest little creature I had ever seen. One look into her playful eyes, and I was in love. We took her home and played for hours. She would run around the kitchen table at full-speed as I would toss her toy to her. I woke up the next morning for school, excited to play with my new puppy, only to find her dead in her kennel. Our family’s new puppy, Sasha, died of heartwom disease the day after we adopted her.
Heartworms are devastating when a pet is diagnosed with the parasite. That experience is one of the reasons I became a vet; I want to be able to help prevent this easily preventable, deadly disease so that no other family needs to suffer the loss of their pet. Although Sasha died from heartworms, it can be treated, but the treatment is costly and risky.
Prevention of the disease is key. Pets in the Des Moines area, including right here in Grimes and Johnston, need to take a monthly heartworm prevenative to help avoid the dreaded parasite. Even pets that are mostly indoors can become infected with heartwoms. Dogs and cats get the parasite thorgh a mosquito bite, and it only takes one mosquito.
I urgently plead that all of you administer a heartworm preventative to your dog or cat and to tell your friends and family to do the same. The preventatives are obtained through your veterinarian, so please call us today to discuss which preventative is best for your pet.