Here at Animal Medical Center of Wyoming, we believe that one of the most important parts of caring for your pets is annual preventative care! This includes vaccinations, preventive medications, and regular testing for diseases.
Sometimes the healthiest of us can still be afflicted with unfair illnesses, like cancer or Type 1 diabetes. Other diseases, however, can be prevented if we take the proper precautions. What better way to take care of your pet than to take steps to prevent him from getting sick when you can? Below are four diseases you can prevent in your pet.
Caused by the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, which is transmitted by deer ticks, Lyme disease in dogs can be prevented by avoiding environments where ticks are prevalent, checking your dog’s skin and coat daily and removing ticks, using appropriate year-round flea and tick preventives, and vaccinating your dog against Lyme when appropriate.
Mosquitoes are more than a nuisance; a single bite from a mosquito carrying infective heartworm larvae can be potentially deadly for your dog. After the bite, the larvae make their way through the dog’s body until they reach the heart and blood vessels within the lungs. This process can take about 6 months. Once there, the larvae mature and can grow to be 12 inches or longer. Heartworm disease can be prevented by administering a regular, year-round heartworm preventive.
Also called the dog flu, canine influenza is a highly contagious and potentially deadly viral infection that has affected dogs in most U.S. states. Some dogs suffering from canine influenza do not exhibit any symptoms but still spread the virus to other dogs. Those that do become ill may develop a persistent cough, nasal and/or eye discharge, fever, lethargy, and reduced appetite. Some dogs can develop more serious secondary bacterial infections that lead to pneumonia. There have been two strains of dog flu identified—H3N8 and H3N2—and both can be prevented with a vaccine.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that occurs when a dog comes into contact with the Leptospira bacteria, often in contaminated water. Infected dogs can experience fever, shivering, weakness, decreased appetite, sore muscles and reluctance to move, depression, increased thirst and urination, vomiting, diarrhea, yellow skin or whites of eyes, dehydration, and more. Prevent your dog from becoming infected with leptospirosis by not letting him drink from standing water or swim in bodies of water that could be contaminated. There is also a Leptospirosis vaccine that might be a good option for your dog.
Call us if you have questions about vaccines or preventable diseases, or to schedule your companion’s preventive care appointment!