As most pet owners already know, heartworm treatment for cats and dogs isn't the same. Never, under any circumstances, should you give your cat heartworm treatment that is designed for a dog - or vice versa. Even though you may own both dogs and cats, you should always give them medicine that is designed for their species.
No matter how you look at it, heartworm treatment isn't easy. Your goal is to get rid of the heartworms, although there are several factors that you'll need to consider. The first thing to do is take your cat to the vet, as he will be able to run tests to determine just how many heartworms your pet has. He can also find out how the worms are affecting your cat and if your cat can deal with any side effects that the treatment medicine may impose.
Heartworms are a very serious condition, as the worms will feast on the vital areas around your cat's heart. Treatment can be serious as well, especially if something goes wrong. Veterinarians are trained to deal with heartworms though, in both cats and dogs. Even though you may be able to buy treatment medicine at your local department store, you should always consult with your vet before you give anything to your pet.
Treating your cat for heartworms may indeed be no treatment at all, as cats are extremely difficult to treat. The dying worms have side effects as well, often times causing more than 1/3 of the treated cats to end up with serious problems. Dying worms can become lodged in the arteries of the heart, which are already inflamed due to the worms being there. When a lodged worm starts to decompose, it can lead to very serious problems. Pets that have a serious infestation with heartworms may need to spend some time at the hospital, to ensure that they are properly treated.
Some cats may not be able to take a certain type of heartworm treatment medicine. Depending on the side affects and how the medicine affects the cat, some breeds may not be able to take some of the better medicines. To determine the best treatment options for your cat, your vet will need to run several tests. Once the tests have concluded, your vet will be able to tell you the best options available for treatment.
With all diseases, prevention is a lot better and safer than treatment. Be sure to talk to your vet and find out what heartworm prevention medication is the best to use. Your vet can tell you what you need to get, and how to use it. This way, you can prevent your pet from getting heartworms - and the serious side effects and life threatening issues that go along with them.
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