Dear Pet Lovers
As I write this in mid-November, it’s 39 degrees and raining. A cold, miserable, cold, wet, cold day. Yuck! Autumn is here, but it sure feels like winter to me.
While many of us are starting to think about the holidays ahead, and the arrival of more cold weather, let me take a minute to remind you about heartworms and heartworm prevention. Yes, I have said it before, and I will keep repeating it because it is so important to your pets.
Here’s my message: KEEP YOUR PETS ON HEARTWORM PREVENTION ALL YEAR … WINTER, TOO.
For those of you not aware, the ONLY way pets can get heartworm disease is from mosquitoes. And, sadly, heartworms can be a fatal disease. Fortunately, it can be treated. But it’s far better from a health standpoint (and more cost-effective) to prevent it in the first place … plus, nearly all our heartworm preventions will also prevent certain intestinal worms as well.
While fleas become dormant in the winter months in North Carolina, mosquitoes are more persistent. Furthermore, mosquitoes are a continual, year-round threat in our region. Of course, we won’t have nearly as many mosquitoes in January as we do in July, but they do emerge on warmer winter days. The ‘magic’ temperature for mosquitoes to emerge is ~50-52 degrees. One of the many joys of living in NC is that we always have comfortable, sunny days in January and February with temps routinely hitting the 50’s and higher.
So why is this important? Heartworm prevention. We often see a number of pet owners who take their dogs off heartworm prevention during the winter months. And that is a big mistake in this area.
Some pet owners who have lived up north have been in the habit of taking their pets off heartworm prevention. And that makes sense when you rarely have days above freezing for weeks at a time. But here in North Carolina, mosquitoes are a year-round threat, so it’s imperative to keep your pets on heartworm prevention all year.
So, let me say it one more time:
KEEP YOUR PETS ON HEARTWORM PREVENTION … ALL YEAR … WINTER, TOO!
Thank you all for your support and patronage
Dr. Bob & CVPC Team