Sunday, February 14, 2016

Feline Heartworms...A Hidden and Deadly Threat!

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Almost all dog owners are aware of the severity of heartworm disease, but very few cat owners know about heartworms or have their cats on preventative.   Sleuth the Reporter Dog asked VNN to help him educate cat owners about this hidden threat.

1) Feline heartworm disease is more common than Feline Leukemia.

2) Heartworms are spread by mosquitoes and will affect a cat’s blood vessels in the heart and lungs.

3) Many cats are misdiagnosed with bronchitis or asthma after infection.   Symptoms can actually diminish, but a serious threat still exists.

4) As heartworm larvae reach the heart and lungs, or when the adult heartworms start dying, your cat could be in danger of dying without warning or showing any symptoms.

5) Classic signs of heartworm disease can be confused with other diseases.   These signs include:  vomiting, difficulty breathing, sudden collapse or weight loss.

6) Any cat with any of these signs should see a veterinarian immediately.   Death has occurred quickly, sometimes happening within 60 minutes.

7) Testing for heartworms is available, but can often be complex and unreliable.  

8) Monthly prevention is available from your veterinarian and should be used for the life of the cat.

9) Be sure to bookmark as your best source for reliable pet health information.