Heartworm disease is a common but somewhat unfamiliar condition. Heartworms are transmitted by mosquitoes feeding on infected animals and then biting another pet. Heartworm disease can affect both cats and dogs, even when they live indoors.
Adult heartworms cause problems by clogging the heart and major blood vessels which leads to heart failure and poor blood supply to other organs such as the lungs, liver, and kidneys. Symptoms we look for in heartworm positive patents include poor hair coat, shortness of breath, coughing, weakness and loss of appetite. Heartworm disease is easy to prevent with a monthly oral or topical dose of medication. At Manchaca Road Animal Hospital we recommend giving heartworm prevention all year long due to our warm climate and the abundance of heartworm positive animals in Texas. Many dogs that get heartworms can be treated but it can be difficult on the pet and expensive.
Recently Manchaca Road Animal Hospital treated a beautiful Golden Retriever named “Lady” for heartworm disease. Lady is 2 1/2 years old and was recently adopted by one of our clients in May. Since Lady was not given heartworm preventative prior to her adoption, our hospital recommend a ten minute blood test in our laboratory to detect heartworms. The test revealed a positive result and the owner opted to proceed with treatment. The next steps were x-rays of Lady’s chest and lab work to help us design a safe treatment protocol. We started Lady on an antibiotic for three weeks to weaken the heartworms. Then we hospitalized Lady at Manchaca Road Animal Hospital and administered a medication (Immiticide) to kill the adult heartworms. Lady spent two days in our hospital receiving her treatments. An oral medication (Denamarin) was sent home to support her liver during this time and she was kept calm and quiet, in a confined environment for 4 weeks while the heartworms slowly died. Lady recently came back in July for her follow up visit at Manchaca Road. At this time she was given a medication to kill any microfilaria (juvenile heartworms). Heartworm preventative (Heartgard) was sent home with Lady to be given every month. She will return for a recheck and heartworm test in six months to ensure that she is cleared from heartworms. Lady is doing well and happily adjusting to life with her new owner in College Station, Texas. We are pleased to be part of a successful adoption and starting a new life for this dog and her family.
Dasuquin with MSM by Nutramax
Nutramax has been supplying the veterinary community with excellent products for many years beginning with Cosequin in the early 1990’s. Cosequin was a smashing success and many other products followed. With their outstanding reputation for adhering to self-imposed, strict regulations and quality control, Manchaca Road Animal Hospital is confidant their new product “Dasuquin” will not disappoint. This product is a nutritional supplement labeled for joint health support. It is an improved version of glucosamine/ chondroitin sulfate with a new ingredient that triples its effectiveness and the pleasant added surprise of a lower price. It is available for small to medium dogs, large dogs and cats. The canine product comes in a chewable flavored tablet, while the feline product comes in a capsule you can open and sprinkle on their food with natural chicken and tuna flavors.
Learn more at the Nutramax website.
Oravet by Merial
Finally a breakthrough in oral health care with a product that forms a barrier against bacteria filled plaque. We apply the professional barrier at Manchaca Road Animal Hospital after we clean your pet’s teeth. Then we send home the “plaque prevention gel” for you to easily apply at home once a week. The application takes less than a minute and, unlike tooth paste, lasts up to a week. Starting after the teeth cleaning and professional application, pet owners apply the gel on the tooth surface along the gum line with their fingers. It is quick and easy to do. Used weekly, this product should significantly reduce plaque and tartar buildup resulting in a healthier pet overall.
Learn more at the Oravet website.
For dog owners who don’t like applying topical flea treatments on their canine companions every month, there is now an alternative. Comfortis is the first FDA approved chewable tablet that kills fleas and prevents infestations for an entire month.
The benefits of this product are:
• Convenience- no issues with bathing and no need to isolate your pet
• No mess or staining of their beautiful haircoat
• Quick acting- starts killing fleas within thirty minutes
• No skin reactions
The most common side effect has been stomach upset. Our clients at Manchaca Road Animal Hospital love this product. Many of them give it every month right along with their heartworm prevention.
Learn more at the Comfortis website.
Arguably one of our pet’s most common ailments is vomiting and diarrhea. And, of course, it always seems to happen on the weekends, holidays, and evenings. There is now a Purina product that is a “must have” in every home for many causes of diarrhea and intestinal disease.
Here are just a few conditions where Forta Flora has proven helpful:
• IBD (irritable bowel syndrome)
• Bacterial/ Protozoa enteritis
• Inappropriate ingestion or “garbage gut”
• Antibiotic therapy (to help replenish normal bacteria)
• Post surgical upset stomach
• Change of diet
• New puppy/ kitten
• Stress (travel, boarding, new environment, etc.)
Forte Flora is made for dogs & cats and comes in a powder form in individual daily dosage packets. It has live active cultures, probiotics, and antioxidants. To top it all off, it tastes great and even helps some pets eat better. From personal experience, I can honestly say it was well liked by my cat and corrected her condition quickly.
Learn more at the Purina website.