Dealing with Heartworm (2023)


#puppies #ShelterDogs #Heartworm

It was bound to happen, I was destined to get another dog. I have always wanted to have a german shepherd, and I finally found the right one. My new dog loves Jasper and Leo and I couldn't be happier.

Unfortunately, Dexter my new dog is heartworm positive which means he is going through a tough treatment and has been on crate rest for a couple of months. This is why it is really important to give your dogs heartworm preventative treatments so they don't have to go through this process.

If you are in the market for a new dog check your local shelters first you can almost always find exactly what you are looking for at a shelter or rescue near you, with very few exceptions, you may have to be patient but you can find one.


Okay, yeah all right, hello, everyone, its Eleanor, Roosevelt, embackment, aday, we're gonna talk about Nestor and his heartworm diagnosis.

Dexter is a 18 month old, German Shepherd that we rescued about a week ago, week ago, with you.

We could go yes and he is heartworm positive.

So today we're going to talk about what that means.

What her worm is how it can affect you and your pet and, most importantly, how you can prevent it.

So you don't have to go through the treatment that dust is going through with your pet, because it's kind of a hassle.

So let's get started so heartworm heart worms are a parasite.

They are transmitted by mosquitoes.

Your breathing stops they're transmitted by mosquitoes so anytime, an infected mosquito bites a dog.

They can become infected with heart worms.

It does take about seven months for the dog to then become herim positive on a test.

So, that's why it's important to regularly test your dogs because it does take a while for them to become heartworm positive, but the heart worms go into the bloodstream and these little baby heartworms swing around your dog's bloodstream until they get to the heart where they stay and they grow bigger and they can grow a foot to two feet in length which is like really really long, if you think about it for being in a heart and they latch onto the vessels- and they just say there and get all big and gross- and this are feeding off of the nutrients in your dog's blood and more and more of them can start.

You know, grouping up and clumping up and unfortunately that can cause a lot of heart problems for your dog, so um.

It can be harder for your dog to breathe because they're not getting oxygen efficiently enough, because the heart is having to work a lot harder.

Not only can they start to free bola heavier, but they can just be really lethargic because again, they're just not oxygenating their blood as well.

It's not pumpkin through the heart as efficiently, and they can also get some forms of.

Oh, what am I thinking of issues with their valves, because the worms can actually stop the valves from closing all the way, and so blood can flow where it's not supposed to and create I want to say it's a kind of heart murmur.

Somebody fact-checked me on that, but um it just creates all kinds of problems and they feel nasty and when they have enough heart room, so it's really affecting them.

They start to bloat and they have this fluid in their abdomen and I'm.

Not a Hyper's, not sure why that happens.

I did not study enough before making this video, but it is related to the heart room.

So if you see I see an I see dogs come into the shelter all the time that people are like.

Oh, that dog looks like it's pregnant, like really pregnant, like that's, always like really loaded them like.

No, actually, that's just like end-stage heart worm disease, and they just have all this this fluid and if you tap on it, it sounds like kind of like hollow.

Like kind of like a like a bad watermelon or like a water balloon, it has that that Ecklie Halloween sound and it's it's really sad.

The CH dogs coming because they're like I, know, I know it's sad, isn't it and they're they're, you know labor and breathe.

Even just walking is hard for them and they're.

Clearly in pain too.

It causes pain.

Just because you know stuff is not right in their system.

So that's what heart room can can do to your dog.

If you you, let it get to the adult stage and you let them get you know and infected with it.

So the treatment for heartworm there is a treatment for heartworm, but number one.

It was really expensive.

Before we adopted ducks, we had our vet, prepare an estimate and it was going to be about two thousand dollars and it's that's for the medicine, the injections, as well as the vet stays that would be associated with it and the retesting and some of the other medications that Kate would have to take as well.

So two thousand dollars for a year of treatment to meet completely hundred percent done with heartworms and that's a lot of money.

We were really fortunate that someone graciously sponsored part of Dusty's treatment, so we're not gonna have to pay for the medications, but we still are gonna have to pay for the overnight vet stays- and you know rechecking him in six months and three months in six months in a year to make sure that we got all of them.

Cuz, um, well, heart retrieval is about ninety ninety-five percent effective.

Sometimes it misses some of the worms and you have to go through it, two or sometimes even three times to get all of them.

If you have a really highly infected dog, so um the worst thing about heartburn treatment, though I think is, you have to restrict your dog's exercise so and I'm not talking like just don't hike with them miles.

Poor ducks here isn't a crate for most of the day, um just chillin by his lonesome, because you really can't do anything.

So when I take him out to pup to go potty, he has to be on a leash and if he gets excited at all I take him right back in and put him in his crate and I can't walk him farther than the mailbox.

He gets.

One walk a day to the mailbox and back and that's it: I try to go like walk one day and then don't walk and then walk the next day.

Because anytime, your dogs hurt when they're going to have treatment, it gets excited and it gets beating real fast, because you know they're excited or they're running or they're being active.

The worms that are in their heart that are dying from this medicine that you're giving them to kill them, because that's what we want.

Sometimes they can start to like break apart or you know, there's there's kind of a lot of them.

If you look up, don't do this if you're squeamish, but if you look up like pictures of necropsy, some dogs of them died of heart room jaw that have died that were heartworm positive.

You can see it's just it's like a massive spaghetti.

Is really gross, but parts of these worms will break off and go into the bloodstream and they can get stuck in the blood vessels in the lungs, the pulmonary vessels and create clots that make it really really difficult for them to breathe and they can throw what's called a pulmonary embolism and die from that if their their heart gets going too fast, and you know it starts sending off pieces of dead worm all around the body, and they can, you know, create several other issues that can create areas of infection and swelling and all this stuff, but mainly it's the the pulmonary embolisms.

That would be an issue because blood flow to the lungs is, you know, kind of important for like Oh, exchange and stuff like that.

So the point of all of this is that heart room treatment is really rough on the dog.

They have to get an injection, they inject it in their back muscles um, yes, I, know and they're really sore for about a week or two afterwards, and then they need to their shows three injections.

Some places will tell you two, but three is what the American heartland Society recommends and they they need to be done.

The first injection and then thirty days later, the second two injections and you have to keep your dog quiet for it that first month so four weeks and then after the second and third injection another four weeks and then most veterinarians will recommend after they'll check them, then and then do another two weeks of limited activity before they can return to full activity.

So that's like ten weeks where you have to keep your dog quiet in a crate for most today only.we swaps, no playing with other dogs no running on the house.

No fetch! No, you know getting excited about food, none of that.

They can't have any activity where their heart rate can go up because they could possibly die from it and it is so hard it's so hard, especially you know.

That's is a really good boy and most of time he doesn't whine.

It is great, but if we're that was a yawn out of one, if we're going out and we're taking the other dogs with us or we're going upstairs and he's downstairs in its crate he'll my little bit cuz, he wants to be with us.

It's a very people, centered dog, and we that's one of the things we chose him for and then now we have to lock him in a crate, because if I didn't have other dogs I'd, let him out and walk around the house, because that wouldn't be enough activity to UM to increase.

That's where I'm looking for it to increase its heart rate, but my other two little dogs love him to death and want to play with him, and so they can't like have them, interact so I'm having to keep them these.

You know two three dogs separate from each other and also to get walk him and you know, make sure he's using the restroom he's he's a little picky about using the restroom on a leash.

So you kind of have to like pretend we're going on a walk to get him to go number two huh yeah I'm talking about you and it's a lot of work and then also you know, I'm doing I'm spending at least an hour of my height.

Yes, thank you.

I know, I'm talking about you yeah, please, lady! That's my boy, I know see he gets frustrated.

He wants to go and do things but I'm spending an hour two hours of my day.

Doing training with him.

That's you know just like sit down stay shake touch so that he gets mental stimulation and you know making Kong's every day.

So he has frozen Kong's ready to go whatever.

He needs like calm, no stuff we're spending money on two toys and we're spending money on special, like pheromone collars, to try and help them out with something my vet recommended.

He recommended a certain brand of collar that has pheromones in it.

That will help keep him calm, but it's been really difficult and I know that ducks would be a lot happier if we could run it around, but I don't want to die.

Hey this is a PG show, okay, so that's why heartworm treatment is is so difficult on on your handles now, if you've heard that and you're like wow I, don't want my dogs to get heartburn.

The great news is that her room is a hundred percent preventable 100% preventable and then the easy once a month chew that you give your dogs and it's not very expensive and there's lots of places where you can get like vouchers to either reduce the cost or, to you know, get free, heartworm treatment here.

Man I know and there's there's really just no excuse.

If you're.

If you have pets, you need to take them to the vet and no matter where you live in the world.

Heart burns are a thing: maybe not.

Okay, maybe not like Antarctica, but I know, at least in the u.s.

they're, seeing rising heart room rates in places like the Pacific Northwest, and you know the the North East and all over the northern ride the US, because people will go.

Oh one, you know I have to treat my my dog forever.

I love LA, but all it takes.

Thank you down, Thanks down.

Okay, that's fine um! You want to be behind me.

I guess he's camera-shy right now, anyway, as I was saying, 13 rising, heart room rates in colder places where you wouldn't typically see really or you wouldn't typically see our rates high, because people are not doing their preventative and especially down here in the south and Texas, where it's a hugely prevalent, because we have mosquitoes pretty much year-round.

I have no idea why you wouldn't go to the vet and buy you know like a twenty dollar medicine I'm going to know if it's that much um once a month to be able to ensure that your dog doesn't have to go through this.

You know $2,000 treatment that is extremely painful and mentally and physically taxing on them it just it doesn't making sense to me so um.

It's really unfortunate that that's this previous similar didn't do the simple thing of giving him his heartworm prevention once a month, and now he has to go through all of this, because someone was neglectful of him I'm pretty positive.

He didn't get it just by like being astray, because he was really well groomed and good boy and didn't look like he had been on his own for at least the seven months that it would have taken him to test Hartman positive huh yeah, because your nails were short.

You were pretty clean, so someone just decided not to which is really sad that he now has to sit in a crate for three months and not do anything, because somebody was done so Morgan story.

Her worm is something that you should be worried about with your pet.

You should be talking to your doctor about how you're protecting your pet um, also segue, that I forgot to mention.

Thank you.

There's a six-month injection that you can give, so you only have to do it twice a year.

It's a little bit more expensive, but if you're forgetful like me and that's just pop event anyway, if you're forgetful, if you're forgetful like me- and you- you know, just wanted to be sure that you don't accidentally forget your dog's heartworm treatment for a month because I know I might do that at some point.

If I didn't do that six-month injections, definitely and that's kind of all I have to say about that.

So make sure you get your dogs on her and relative or get them tested.

So you know if you have to treat them for heartworm and me and Dexter are gonna, go, have some training time, huh yeah! So we'll see you all later.

Don't forget to hit that like button leave a comment about whether you would be willing to adopt a a heartworm, positive dog and don't forget to hit that subscribe button.

So you can see all of Dexter's progress, huh all right, we'll see y'all later bye.


Dealing with Heartworm? ›

An injectable drug, melarsomine (Immiticide®), is given to kill adult heartworms. Melarsomine kills adult heartworms in the heart and adjacent vessels. This drug is administered in a series of injections. Your veterinarian will determine the specific injection schedule according to your dog's condition.

Will a dog with heartworm be cured completely? ›

Dogs with no signs or mild signs of heartworm disease, such as cough or exercise intolerance, have a high success rate with treatment. More severe disease can also be successfully treated, but the possibility of complications is greater.

How long can a dog live with heartworms? ›

The lifespan of a dog in this condition is most likely limited to a few weeks or a few months. Your vet will guide you on the best course of action for treating your dog depending on the severity of their infection. Dogs can live for at least six to seven months after becoming infected with heartworms.

Can you touch a dog with heartworm? ›

The takeaway. You can't get heartworms from your dogs, cats, or other pets — only from mosquitos that carry the infection. Most heartworm microfilariae die on their way through the skin. Even if they do get into your blood somehow, heartworms can't mature and will eventually die off.

Can dogs live after getting heartworm? ›

Dogs with heartworm disease can live high-quality lives as long as they are given appropriate care. After completing treatment and following your veterinarian's recommenda- tions on heartworm disease testing and prevention, the chances of any long-term effects are very low.

What percentage of dogs survive heartworm? ›

Prognosis: heartworm treatment success rates

With the three-dose adulticide protocol described above, in conjunction with doxycycline and macrocyclic lactones as recommended by the American Heartworm Society, 98% of dogs will be cleared of heartworm infection.

What are the chances a dog survives heartworm treatment? ›

In the past, the drug used to treat heartworm disease contained high levels of arsenic, and toxic side effects frequently occurred. A newer drug is available that does not have as many side effects, allowing successful treatment of more than 95% of dogs with heartworms.

Is it painful for a dog to have heartworms? ›

Heartworm disease can be painful if the heart is very enlarged or if the migration of the worm suddenly happens and causes some issues in the vessels.

Do dogs feel bad with heartworms? ›

Dogs who cough often may cause themselves to vomit as a result of their extensive coughing. Some dogs may feel nauseated from their heartworms as well, and may vomit often just because they feel so sick with the disease.

Is heartworm damage permanent? ›

All of the damage that the heartworms do while they're inside the body is permanent. Sometimes we can reverse some of the symptoms, but all of the damage will still be present.

Can dogs go on walks with heartworm? ›

With minor variations, treatment of heartworm disease typically takes 2-5 months to complete. The most important thing you can do during the treatment is to restrict your dog's physical activity to a bare minimum of short leash walks for bodily functions (urinating, defecating) only.

Can my dog walk around the house after heartworm treatment? ›

A pivotal factor in reducing the risk of thromboembolic complications is to restrict exercise during the critical month following treatment. Dogs that have undergone heartworm treatment should be kept on strict rest. If the dog is calm while indoors, he/she can be allowed loose in the house to rest.

How much does it cost to treat heartworms? ›

Average Cost of Treatment. The average cost of heartworm treatment for dogs is often around $1,000. However, it can range from $500 to $1,100 or even more depending mainly on the size of your dog, veterinary bills, and the stage of the disease.

How long does a dog need to be crated after heartworm treatment? ›

To reduce the risk of negative side effects for your pet, our veterinarians recommend closely following these 3 guidelines: Rest for 60 days (ideally in a crate): Rest is the single most important factor to successful heartworm treatment.

What happens to dead heartworms in dogs? ›

The adult worms die in a few days and start to decompose. As they break up, they are carried to the lungs, where they lodge in the small blood vessels and are eventually reabsorbed by the body.

Do dogs go back to normal after heartworm treatment? ›

Your dog won't be able to be active after his heartworm treatment for at least a few months. “The dead heartworms take some time to be broken down by the dog's immune system,” Dr. Marteney said. If the dead worms are still intact, they can cause major issues if your dog's heart rate becomes elevated.

Does heartworm leave permanent damage? ›

The trauma caused by even a small number of heartworms can lead to rapid and often permanent change within the pulmonary arteries.

Can heartworm damage reversed? ›

Is heartworm damage permanent? All of the damage that the heartworms do while they're inside the body is permanent. Sometimes we can reverse some of the symptoms, but all of the damage will still be present.

Is heartworm disease permanent? ›

Heartworm Disease Causes Lifelong Damage - American Heartworm Society.

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