Spring Time is Prevention Time!

With record snow fall in the Sierras this winter, mosquitoes will be flourishing more now than drier years in the past. Spring is the perfect time to start preventatives for heartworm disease!

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If you are not familiar with heartworm disease – it’s a parasite transmitted by infected mosquitoes.  Adult worms develop in the heart, cause heart failure and eventually death.  Crazy thing…it can be prevented. 

This disease isn’t as prevalent in Northern Nevada, but it does exist in the Reno-Tahoe area.  It actually affects both, dogs and cats, in every state. 2013-Heartworm-Incidence-Map

With record snow fall in the Sierras this winter, mosquitoes will be flourishing more now than drier years in the past.  Spring is the perfect time to start preventatives for heartworm disease!

Heartworm larvae live in infected mosquitoes and are transmitted when they bite your dog or cat.  The larvae develop into adults that gather in the heart.  Once adult worms are present, without treatment prognosis is death.

Boomer HW

Boomer’s Heart Infected with Adult Heartworms – Villa Lobos Rescue Center

The best way to prevent heartworm disease is keeping your pet on a preventative year round. Infected mosquitoes in the Lake Tahoe Area, have even been found at the Lake level as late as November. Yes November! So, skipping winter months is no longer a viable option to fight this often fatal disease.

Performing a simple blood test at your veterinarian’s hospital can test for the disease in as little as 10 minutes.  Negative results mean you can start the preventative.  It’s as easy as giving a tasty beef chew once a month.  Positive results are another story of their own.  Treatment is necessary to save your pet and risks involved can be fatal as well.

As an active outdoor enthusiast, camping and hiking with my dogs is a must. My dogs are protected by Heartgard all year, since mosquitoes are unavoidable. Although there are products like k9 Advantix II that repel mosquitoes, there’s no guarantee.  And…mosquitoes not biting your dog are biting you.  Cases of heartworm have been reported in humans as well. West Nile Virus is another nasty disease spread by mosquitoes.

Tech Tips:

  • Get your dog tested for Heartworm disease annually.
  • If, you skip or miss a dose, be sure to re-test in 6 months.
  • Keep your dog on a Heartworm preventative all year.
  • Symptoms, though not always seen, may include:
  • A mild persistent cough, lethargy, exercise intolerance, weight-loss, and loss of appetite.

The fact is, if there’s even a chance for infection and there’s a preventative…It’s in your power to ensure you pets’ well being.

Spring is here so start prevention now!

Ten Ways To Bark in the New Year Purr-fectly!

corgi-new-year

Our pets are clueless when it comes to the holidays, nor do they care about our need to ring in the New Year!  Try some of my tech tips and start you and your pet’s New Year right.

  1. Check your local listings for announcements about Fireworks displays and New Year’s celebrations. (Reno/Tahoe) (Carson City)
  2. Keep pets in a safe, secure place inside during outdoor festivities. Be sure doors and windows are secured.  Turn on the TV or Radio.
  3. Be sure they have current identification tags and that their microchip information is updated.
  4. When hosting or attending parties, keep pets at a safe distance and in a secure place. Festive noise makers, loud, laughing friends or unfamiliar faces could spook your pet.9cff457122ad4cae45c24215e5bc8052
  5. Keep toxic foods out of paws’ reach. Goodies like chocolate, raisin laden fruit cake, rich, fatty foods, meat bones, and alcohol could be fatal.
  6. Schedule a visit to your veterinarian for special medications to help with anxiety or noise aversion.
  7. Take them to a cozy boarding facility with fully enclosed kennels if you’re going to be out-of-town.
  8. Hire a pet sitter or friend to stay home with your pets, if you can’t be there with them to celebrate.
  9. Find a dog friendly celebration and bring Fido along!
  10. Watch Ryan Seacrest rock in the New Year in Times Square together.

By keeping your pets safe this New Year’s Eve, 2017 is sure to unveil a year full of playing and hiking, catnip and cookies…pet friendly cookies that is!

cool-catWhat will you be doing to this NYE to start it off PURR-FECTLY?