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Heartworm & Flea Prevention

Although the prevention of heartworms and fleas are two entirely different topics, we discuss them together because in the Houston area, protection against both is vital. Also, some of preventatives sold protect patients from both parasites with the one product. Heartworm disease can be deadly, and treatment is extremely costly. Treatment for flea infestation is typically not as expensive and rarely results in the patient’s death.


In Houston, there’s no shortage of mosquitoes, the carriers that spread heartworm disease from one infected animal to another. Though mosquitoes are more prevalent during the summer months, they are present year round, and both dogs and cats should be on protection year round. There are many heartworm preventatives from which to choose, and selecting the product that makes you to feel most comfortable about its protection for your pet can be daunting. At Animal Hospitals Champions Northwest and Jones Road, we offer several alternatives for heartworm prevention. There are injections that protect for six months, as well as chewable monthly pills and topical applications. Our recommendation is to speak with one of our associate veterinarians about heartworm prevention options for your dog or cat and make an educated decision. Additionally, it is best to purchase the product from a veterinarian, in order to receive the manufacturer’s warranty.


Our animal hospitals test dogs and cats annually for heartworm disease and treat canine patients with positive test results. Patients with more severe cases receive in hospital care and medication and this phase of treatment may take up to four months, though the pet stays at home under restricted activity guidelines most of this time. Treatment for heartworm disease is costly, debilitating for the pet, and does not reverse permanent damage caused by the parasite. There is no treatment for cats with heartworm disease.


Fleas are a terrible nuisance in our area, and pets are their favorite host for invading the home. They are more than just a nuisance, and serve as a vector for transmitting viral, bacterial, and rickettsial diseases, as well as protozoans and helminths (tapeworms). Pets with extreme flea infestations may suffer from anemia. Needless to say, the administration of prevention is a fairly simple way for you and your pet to avoid fleas and their nasty side effects. Our advice regarding flea prevent is similar to that of heartworm prevention. Please speak with one of our associate veterinarians about flea prevention options for your dog or cat and make an educated decision. Additionally, it is best to purchase the product from a veterinarian, in order to receive the manufacturer’s warranty.