According the American Heartworm Society, approximately one million dogs have heartworms today!  That is a huge number, especially considering how easy it is to protect your pets against heartworm disease.  April is National Heartworm Month in the United States, so there’s no better time to get your furry family members tested and caught up on heartworm prevention.  Remember that cats are not safe from this deadly parasite, either.  They need prevention too!

In the meantime, here are some interesting facts about heartworm disease:

  • Heartworms are spread through mosquito bites.
  • Almost 100% of dogs who are exposed to heartworms become infected.  There are no “close calls”.
  • According to a study performed by the University of North Carolina, approximately 25% of cats infected with heartworm disease were strictly indoor cats! 
  • After infection has occurred, heartworm treatment is very costly and most post serious health risks to your pet.
  • Heartworms can live up to about 7 years in dogs and 3 years in cats.  During that time, the parasite does irreparable damage to the heart, lungs, and other vital organs.

On a more positive note, research suggests that if everybody used prevention methods appropriately, we could eliminate heartworm disease altogether!  Do your part!  For the love of your pet, keep him or her protected from this parasite.  Prevention is so easy.

To read more about heartworm disease and how to protect your pet, visit the American Heartworm Society.