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Old 07-19-2011, 04:30 AM
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Question Heartworm medication... necessary?

How important/necessary is a heartworm or flea, tick, or parasite medication? Does it depend on where you live? Or should all dogs have it?
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Old 07-19-2011, 04:43 AM
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In my area it's a must, especially since her have "skeeters" as my little cousin calls them which cause heart worm.
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Old 07-19-2011, 01:16 PM
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i was told by my vet that if the flea / tick medication also repels "skeeters" then heartworm medication is overkill.
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Old 07-19-2011, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mijo View Post
i was told by my vet that if the flea / tick medication also repels "skeeters" then heartworm medication is overkill.
Sorry, but your vet couldn't be more wrong.

Heartworm preventative is the MOST important out of the two medications. We don't do flea/tick stuff but not medicating for HW is like basically gambling with your puppy's life. It is imperative if you live somewhere mosquitos live, your dog be on HW preventative. I think not having your dog on the preventative is basically as bad as hitting it or abusing it.

Flea/Tick depends where you live. Where we are it is really dry and our dogs our outside every day and we've never seen a single flea (knock on wood) so I have the medication if I need to treat for it, but we don't use it monthly.
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Old 07-19-2011, 02:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flippedstars View Post
Sorry, but your vet couldn't be more wrong.

Heartworm preventative is the MOST important out of the two medications. We don't do flea/tick stuff but not medicating for HW is like basically gambling with your puppy's life. It is imperative if you live somewhere mosquitos live, your dog be on HW preventative. I think not having your dog on the preventative is basically as bad as hitting it or abusing it.

Flea/Tick depends where you live. Where we are it is really dry and our dogs our outside every day and we've never seen a single flea (knock on wood) so I have the medication if I need to treat for it, but we don't use it monthly.
Well my vet is the director for vet services for the SPCA in san francisco, and has been practicing for over 30 years. I also asked the vets at UC berkley about this and they also agreed with my regular vet. since heartworms are transmitted via skeeters it would make sense that if you use a flea / tick medication that also protects against skeeters you are also protecting your dog against heartworms. Stastically your dog is more likely to be exposed to fleas and ticks than they are to heartworm. I'm going to go with the recommendation of professional vs. someone on a forum
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Old 07-19-2011, 02:39 PM
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I also would never skip offering my girls heartworm medication. They get it now every 45 days.
Flea and tick medication, for me, is too harsh/too strong a toxin for my little ones so we pass on that.
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Old 07-19-2011, 03:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mijo View Post
Well my vet is the director for vet services for the SPCA in san francisco, and has been practicing for over 30 years. I also asked the vets at UC berkley about this and they also agreed with my regular vet. since heartworms are transmitted via skeeters it would make sense that if you use a flea / tick medication that also protects against skeeters you are also protecting your dog against heartworms. Stastically your dog is more likely to be exposed to fleas and ticks than they are to heartworm. I'm going to go with the recommendation of professional vs. someone on a forum
The general consensus among "educated professionals" basically says your vet is an idiot then. I would look into it, your dog could die because of your vet's negligence.
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Old 07-19-2011, 04:02 PM
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Heartworm is a killer. I am all for naturalistic and holistic care for our dogs and I don't do the topical flea preventatives at all. But I do believe that protecting our dogs from heartworm is necessary and responsible. I do the medication every 45 days.

Heartworms infect, depending on the temperature. They grow inside mosquitos. There is a very high incidence of death in small dogs infected as their hearts can clog with just ONE worm. I don't take the risk.

Here's a map of the US with the incidence/prevalence of heartworms by states. If you are in a state that has infected mosquitos, then I believe you should be using the medication.

http://www.heartwormsociety.org/down...e-Map-2010.pdf
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