Heartgard for dogs is a preventative medicine for heart worms, which can be very damaging to your dog's health. Heart worms is a common disease that while very devastating, is easy to avoid. The best way to avoid this parasite with your pet is to use a preventative medication like Heartgard.
The symptoms of heart worm are not really apparent until the parasite has taken its toll on your dog's health. Your dog may start to cough and as its health deteriorates it will have breathing problems, loss of appetite, and weight loss. And if you let heart worms go untreated for long enough, it will probably cause death. Another reason that it is so important to preempt a disease like heart worm is because Heartgard for dogs will not kill adult parasites already living in your dog.
Giving your dog Heartgard plus will save you lots of money and suffering in the future. The most common way to test for heart worms is x-ray, ultrasound, or blood tests, all of which cost lots of money.
Heart worms go through a couple different stages. The adult heart worms live in the left ventricle and create off spring that travel around in the blood waiting for a mosquito to suck them out for up to two years. When a mosquito does get blood tainted with heart worms and then sucks the blood from another mammal the heart worm is deposited right under the skin in the sore from the bite. The heart worm then grows right there in the skin for 45 to 60 days and then it travels to the muscle in the chest area right around the heart where it stays for a week before migrating through the bloodstream where it is deposited in the heart to begin the process all over again. This process could take longer or short depending on the temperature. This may seem amazing but a heart worm can grow to be up to 12 inches long when fully mature and can live in the left ventricle of the heart for years.
If this sounds like something you want to avoid with your pet then you have to plan ahead and prevent it. The symptoms are not very noticeable so it might be a good idea to get your pet checked out before you start giving them Heartgard for dogs because it will not kill adult heart worms.