Protecting your pet from parasitic diseases.
Keeping your pet safe from parasitic diseases is crucial in today’s vast world. Both internal parasites, such as heartworms and intestinal parasites, and external parasites, such as fleas, ticks, lice, and mites, can harm your pet and cause severe, and even fatal, illnesses. That’s why regular screening and prevention to protect your pet’s well-being is an essential part of your pet’s wellness and preventative care. At Hello Vet, we will thoroughly evaluate your pet’s lifestyle and provide the best recommendations to keep them healthy and free of parasites.
Intestinal Parasite Screening
Intestinal parasites such as roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, tapeworms, and giardia are commonly found in animals that go outside, even if it’s just for a short time. Pets can come in contact with these parasites by eating things outside such as grass, mud, or plants, hunting rabbits or rodents, and licking their feet after being outside. Indoor pets can be exposed if other pets or humans carry parasites in on the fur or feet. Additionally, some parasites can be transmitted from mother to puppy or kitten through the placenta or the mother’s milk.
Therefore, regular intestinal parasite screening is an important aspect of preventive care. Intestinal parasites can cause a range of health problems, such as vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, and anemia. Some parasites may be asymptomatic in pets, meaning they cause no obvious symptoms. These silent invaders can spread to other animals and even to humans, causing harm over time. These parasites can also compromise your pet’s immune system, making them more susceptible to other infections.
Early diagnosis and treatment can prevent the spread of parasites to other pets and humans, and help to prevent further health complications. We recommend that pets be screened for intestinal parasites every 6 months, or more frequently if they are at higher risk of exposure, such as those who spend a lot of time outside or those who have had close contact with infected animals. Puppies and kittens should be screened every 2 months as they are more susceptible to parasites.
The intestinal parasite screening is done using a small sample of fecal matter. It does not require an appointment so if you pet has been to Hello Vet in the past year and is not due for anything else, you can just drop a sample by the clinic during open hours. If your pet is due for vaccines or other wellness and preventative care, bring a sample with you to their next appointment. The fresher the better. It should be no more than 4 hours old without refrigeration. We will have your results within 24-48 hours.
Heartworm Disease & Testing
Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition that affects dogs and cats. The disease is caused by a parasite that is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. This parasite can develop into adult worms that live in the heart and lungs of an infected animal, leading to heart and lung damage, respiratory distress, and even death.
The good news is that heartworm disease is preventable with regular heartworm testing and preventive medication. We recommend that all pets receive an annual heartworm test to ensure early detection of the disease, even if they are indoor pets or have previously tested negative.
The heartworm test is a simple blood test that can be completed in just a few minutes at Hello Vet. If the test results are positive, prompt treatment is necessary to prevent the disease from causing further damage to your pet’s health.
By being proactive and taking preventative measures such as annual heartworm testing, you can help keep your pet healthy and protect them from the serious and potentially life-threatening effects of heartworm disease.
Tick Borne Diseases & Screening
Tick-borne diseases are a serious concern for both dogs and cats, as ticks can transmit various diseases to our furry friends. These diseases can cause a range of symptoms, from mild to severe, and can even be life-threatening if left untreated.
Common tick-borne diseases in dogs include Lyme disease, Ehrlichiosis, Anaplasmosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. In cats, the most common tick-borne disease is Cytauxzoonosis. Symptoms may include fever, lethargy, joint pain, and loss of appetite, among others.
To protect your pet from these diseases, it’s important to take preventative measures, such as using tick preventive products, checking your pet for ticks regularly, and avoiding tick-infested areas. Regular screening is also recommended to ensure early detection and treatment of any tick-borne diseases.
At Hello Vet, we offer a range of screening options for tick-borne diseases, including blood tests and other diagnostic tools. These tests can detect the presence of tick-borne diseases in your pet, even if they are not yet showing any symptoms. Early detection is key to ensuring that your pet receives prompt and effective treatment, which can greatly improve their chances of a full recovery.
If you have any concerns about tick-borne diseases in your pet, don’t hesitate to contact us. We can help you develop a comprehensive prevention plan and schedule regular screenings to keep your pet healthy and protected from these potentially dangerous diseases.
Fleas & Screening
Fleas are pesky insects that feed on the blood of their hosts, causing pain and discomfort. Dogs and cats may even develop an allergic reaction to flea bites, resulting in a more generalized skin condition known as flea allergy dermatitis. Additionally, fleas can transmit tapeworms to pets who inadvertently swallow fleas while biting and chewing at irritated areas.
During a physical exam, fleas can often be detected with the naked eye, particularly at the base of the tail and on the pet’s belly. However, in some cases, no adult fleas may be visible, but “flea dirt,” or flea feces, can be found. To check for flea dirt, we can place this ‘dirt’ on a white paper towel or gauze pad and cover it with isopropyl alcohol. If the ‘dirt’ leaves a red residue, it confirms the presence of flea dirt. The good news is, safe and effective treatments are available to help eliminate fleas and improve your pet’s comfort.
Maintaining your pet’s health requires proactive prevention against both external and internal parasites. Our goal at Hello Vet is to work together with you to identify your pet’s exposure risks and provide tailored recommendations to suit their lifestyle. We offer safe and effective preventives that can protect your pet against a wide range of parasites. When was the last time you administered parasite prevention to your furry friend? Let’s ensure that your pet stays healthy and protected against parasites.
To learn more about Wellness and Preventative Care for your pet, click here.