Myths from Facts about Heartworm Disease

Myth: Heartworm is not in all states.

Fact: This is not true. Cases of heartworm disease has been reported in all 50 U.S. states. Get your pet tested and take preventative measures to protect them.

Myth: Heartworms are contagious.

Fact: The disease is not directly contagious.  It cannot be passed directly from one animal to another or to humans. Heartworms are contracted only from the bite of an infected mosquito.

Myth: Cats can’t get heartworms, it’s a dog disease.

Fact: Dogs and cats of any age and any breed are susceptible to the disease if bitten by an infected mosquito.  So are ferrets.

Myth: Indoor dogs and cats are safe from heartworms.

Fact: Not true. Wherever mosquitoes can go, they can bite. We have all seen mosquitos indoors or have  woken up in our bedroom with mosquito bites.

Myth: Puppies and kittens are immune to the disease.

Fact: Mother dogs and cats pass immunity to some diseases through the colostrum in their milk, but not immunity to heartworms. Start heartworm prevention at an early age; consult your veterinarian to find out when your pup or kitty is old enough.

Myth: Pets are only at risk during mosquito season.

Fact: Although mosquitoes are primarily out and biting during the warmer months, these insects can pop up at any time of the year when warm weather occurs. Mild winters can bring standing water and warm temperatures, which are ideal conditions for mosquitoes.

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