Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital of Pearland is Informing Citizens of the Increased Need for Heartworm Preventative

Unlike 2011, when the City of Houston experienced a severe drought, 2012 has been a very wet year. And with ample amounts of rain, mosquitoes are sure to follow. With an increase in mosquitoes, comes the increased need for protection for our pets; not just from mosquitoes but from heartworms.

Dr. Julie Wickel of Claws & Paws Veterinary Hospital recommends heartworm prevention for our dogs all year long, but says “this is especially important in years with heavy rainfall, when the result is standing water with an increase in mosquitoes”.

You may be asking yourself what you can do to protect yourself and your pet(s). While we, as owners, can keep mosquito repellant on to minimize their bites, some products are harmful for our pets. Dr. Wickel recommends “keeping lawns mowed and flower beds cleaned and free of standing weeds. If you have birdbaths in your yard, keep them clean and change the water frequently. Mosquitoes multiply in standing water.”

To help control the mosquito population, there are several over-the-counter products available at your local home improvement/garden center. Unfortunately, the best time to apply the products to your yard is between the hours of 1:00pm and 5:00pm. This is the hottest part of the day, and this is when the mosquitoes are trying to stay out of the direct heat of the sun and are lying in cool places, such as tall grass or shady areas.

In addition to mosquito population control efforts, the best means of protection for our four-legged friends is with Heartworm Preventative. Heartworm Preventative is typically a monthly product give to our pets in either a chewable or tablet form, and is available at your local veterinary clinic. Prior to starting your pet on Heartworm Preventative, be sure to consult your veterinarian, as giving this product to a pet that has already contracted heartworms can be fatal.

When you take into consideration the cost to treat heartworms disease in an infected dog, the cost of prevention is well worth the investment.