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Parasites such as fleas and ticks can be very damaging to your pet’s health. Preventive measures should be taken year-round to inhibit potential outbreaks.
Are you doing everything you can to make sure your pet is protected from parasites? Cats and dogs can be susceptible year-round and these parasites can cause many diseases, some of which can be life-threatening.
At Animal Clinic of La Porte, we can help you protect your pets from these dangerous pests. With regular veterinary care, your pet can enjoy a long, healthy, parasite-free life.
Make sure your pet is receiving regular veterinary care. Call (281) 709-2186 or contact us online to make your next appointment.
As part of our preventative care program at Animal Clinic of La Porte, our veterinary team will conduct screenings for parasites during your pet’s routine wellness exams. This can include both a physical exam and laboratory testing. We want to be sure to catch anything before it becomes a more serious health issue.
Parasite control and prevention measures can include:
Shampoos or sprays
Tablets and chewable medicines
Depending on your pet’s risk factors, health, and lifestyle, your La Porte veterinarian may recommend some combination of the above methods to protect them from different kinds of parasites.
We have a full-service in-house laboratory that helps us diagnose parasites in your pet and use regular laboratory testing with your pet’s routine wellness exams to stay on top of their health to detect parasites early.
The idea of your pet being infested with parasites is a disturbing thought, but it’s also a medical issue that can have serious consequences. Parasites can diminish quality of life and even cause life-threatening health issues.
Common internal parasites include heartworms, roundworms, hookworms, whipworms and tapeworms. The most frequent external parasites include fleas and ticks. Your pet should be free from parasites, both internal and external.
Fleas and ticks are insects which can cause skin problems, irritation, and transmit certain diseases via their bites. Both cats and dogs can get fleas or ticks. These nasty parasites can also pass disease on to humans.
There are a number of effective preventative measures for your pet available at Animal Clinic of La Porte. If you’re worried about fleas or ticks, ask our veterinary team during your next visit.
Fleas are small, wingless, brown, fast-moving insects you can see in your pet’s fur. Some animals are allergic to the saliva of fleas, which can cause inflammation and more discomfort. If ingested while your pet is grooming themselves, fleas can transmit an intestinal parasite called tapeworm. Flea infestations can lead to anemia and fleas are also capable of transmitting serious diseases.
Ticks are members of the spider family and live in cracks and crevices in the home or outside in vegetation such as grassy meadows, woods, brush, and weeds. Some tick bites only cause mild irritation or swelling at the site, but other tick bites can infect your pet with serious illnesses. If left untreated, these diseases, such as lyme, can lead to more severe health problems or even be fatal.
Note: If you see a tick and cannot remove it, we will gladly help you. Call us immediately to limit the impact of the tick's attachment. It’s much safer to have one of our trained professionals remove the tick for you. Make an appointment with us immediately to limit the impact of the tick.
Intestinal parasites come in a variety of forms. Your cats and dogs can contract hookworms, roundworms, whipworms, tapeworms, or coccidia from a variety of different sources. You may not notice that your pet is suffering from intestinal parasites at first. Common symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, and weight loss. You may even notice some of these parasites in your pet’s feces. Our routine wellness exams include a fecal check to make sure your pets are intestinal parasite-free.
Heartworms are transmitted when an infected mosquito bites your pet. Heartworms are parasites that live in the heart and its surrounding blood vessels. The adult heartworm produces offspring called microfilariae, which circulate in the pet’s blood. Unrecognized and untreated heartworm infections can be fatal.
Heartworms affect both the heart and lungs of cats and dogs. They are typically transmitted by mosquitoes and can cause heart disease and respiratory problems. Symptoms include vomiting, coughing, weight loss, and even sudden death. Fortunately, there are many effective preventative treatments for heartworms. We’ll conduct annual testing with your pet’s routine wellness exams.
If your pet is showing signs of fleas such as continuous scratching, gnawing or licking, schedule an appointment immediately. Additionally, flea dirt, the byproduct of fleas that looks like coffee grounds or pepper, can usually be seen by looking at your pet’s abdomen or by combing your pet’s coat with a fine-tooth comb.
If you see a tick on your pet, do not try and burn it off with a match. This does not work and could harm your pet. It’s much safer to have one of our trained professionals remove the tick for you. Make an appointment with us immediately to limit the impact of the tick.
The best treatment for heartworms is prevention. One of the most common and effective prevention methods is a monthly oral medication.
The parasite is transmitted through mosquito bites and usually the pet shows no signs for months. Later symptoms include difficulty breathing, coughing, weight loss, tiring easily and listlessness. In many cases pets do not show outward signs until advanced stages of the disease. An annual blood test is recommended to screen for heartworms. This disease can be treated if found early, but it can be costly.
Our veterinary team is happy to help you choose the correct preventive regimen based on your pet’s risk factors and health status. It is important to discuss with us yearly which pest control products are ideal for your household based on the everyday life of your pet.
Keep your pet parasite free with routine medical care from our La Porte veterinary team!