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Big Dog, Big Heartworm
Foster volunteer chronicles her pup’s heartworm treatment
Mila

For the past month, I’ve been following a blog about a nine-year-old foster dog named Mila, who is undergoing heartworm treatment. It’s written by Jean, who fosters dogs for Big Hearts Big Dog Rescue in Western New York. Mila is the third heartworm-positive pup to come into Jean’s care.

I’ve never really appreciated the challenges or devastation heartworm, and I’ve never known a dog treated for it. It’s a rare, though not unprecedented, occurrence in my part of the country, where nighttime temperatures aren’t generally hot enough for the heartworm larvae to mature in the mosquito host.

Following Mila’s journey has been an eye-opener—both in terms of the commitment of the caregiver and the challenges of the treatment, in particular, the need to keep the canine patient calm for a month at a time. We’ve asked Jean to check in with us about Mila’s progress.

In the meantime, check out BigDogsBigHeartworm.com to learn more about Mila, the treatment and some myth-busting about heartworm.

► Do you have a heartworm story to tell?

 

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Lisa Wogan lives in Seattle and is the author of, most recently, Dog Park Wisdom. lisawogan.com
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Submitted by Carolyn | August 11 2011 |

Heartworm is a year round problem in Belize. When we adopted Maggie as a 2-3 year old, she was heartworm positive. Our vet does not use immiticide but instead recommended the slow-kill method. Maggie has tested clean since then, 9 years later. Horrible parasite!

Submitted by Hanna at Dog Pr... | August 27 2011 |

We have mosquitos in our backyard because of the 5 fishponds attract them. For fear that my dogs might get stung by an infected mosquito and contract heartworm, I simply don’t let them out unattended although I give them monthly treatments.

Am I being overly protective? Probably, but that nasty parasite really scares me.

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