***Please realize that a lot of veterinary clinics want nothing more than for us to shut down / put us out of business because of our low prices on vaccines and pet products. When we first started CVPC, we trusted our clients to give us an honest answer when asked if their dogs were on prevention. (Imagine that ~ What a concept! We actually trusted our clients since we realize they want what is best for their pet.) Not performing a heartworm test on every dog was a concern among the protesting clinics, and their concerns were voiced to the NC Veterinary Medical Board. So now, by performing a heartworm test on every dog that we have on prevention, that puts an end to their argument of us not running the test. No more complaints by other vets, so we will remain in business to keep saving you money on basic pet care. ***
THE CVPC HEARTWORM TEST / PREVENTION POLICY: (updated February 2018)
We require a heartworm test every 2 years through our clinic in order to prescribe heartworm preventions… as long as your dog is consistently taking prevention every month.
If your dog is missing doses during the year, we must test for heartworm disease every year.
We will gladly honor heartworm tests performed by other veterinary clinics for 1 year from the date of the test, but we must see patient records or invoices (printed or on cell phone) confirming the date of testing. Likewise, we need to see invoices for purchase of heartworm prevention from other vet hospitals.
If you provide a recent prescription for heartworm medication from another vet clinic, then you may purchase heartworm medication… even if we have never seen your dog!
Q: Why does my dog need to be tested for heartworm disease before starting it on prevention?
A: Heartworm disease is a serious, even life-threatening disease. (But it can be successfully treated and cured.) To find out if your dog has the disease, we take a blood sample, then perform a test which takes ~10 minutes to run. If he/she does not have the disease (a Negative test), we strongly recommend putting him/her on heartworm prevention. However, if your dog does have heartworm disease (a Positive test), there are 2 different treatment options, and we will explain your choices. Since some heartworm preventions can have serious adverse effects on your dog if he/she already has the disease, we need to find out if the disease is present before starting prevention. Plus, if you know your dog has the disease (heartworm Positive), then you’ll be better prepared for the potential risks and life-threatening nature of the disease, what symptoms to look for, etc. “Not wanting to know” if your dog has heartworm disease or not is certainly not in the best interest of your dog.
ALL HEARTWORM MEDICATION is by PRESCRIPTION ONLY, so we must — by law — see (or have seen) your pet
We also need to confirm your dog’s weight to make sure they are getting the proper dose.
You’d be surprised by how many dogs we see that are not getting the right dose since the dogs had gained weight, or the owners were trying to pinch pennies and ‘cheat’ with a lower dosage, or the owners were giving the prevention only on occasion (such as failing to give it during the winter months) rather than once-a-month as prescribed. And some dogs tend to throw up the medication (in particular, Trifexis), and if you don’t re-medicate them , or if you don’t even know the pill was spit up, then your dog would not be protected. We’ve seen several of these dogs that tested Positive for the disease even though they were presumably “on prevention”.
Thank you for your understanding and your cooperation.