Treating Dog Heartworms with Chemical Therapy

Dog heartworms are among the most serious and potentially harmful parasites that can infect your pet's body. Heartworms live in the heart tissue and can quickly cause severe damage to the muscle, thereby harming your pet's overall health and even leading to death. Because heartworms are also readily spread, it's crucial that you take the necessary precautions to prevent your pet from developing heartworms. Fortunately, nearly all cases of heartworm can be prevented with some careful preventative techniques. If these do not work, however, and you're able to recognize the presence of dog heartworms early on, you and your vet can use chemical therapy to remove the parasites from your pet's system.

When Chemical Therapy Is Appropriate

Chemical therapy is only recommended for treating heartworms in dogs when the condition is diagnosed and properly identified very early on. The reason for this is that chemical therapy treatments work slowly and kill off heartworms over a gradual period of time. As this happens, the heartworm carcasses build up inside of your pet's tissue. They are gradually absorbed by his body, but this procedure takes time as well. Thus, if there are too many heartworms in your pet's body, the presence of all of the heartworm carcasses can be toxic to his system and may cause him a host of other problems as well and instead. Chemical therapy is thus not appropriate for dogs with more advanced stages of heartworm infection.

Chemical Therapy Benefits

Chemical therapy is one of the most effective ways of eliminating heartworms from your pet's system. Modern chemical therapies will not result in any other side effects when used appropriately, and they are almost 100% effective at eliminating heartworms from your pet. Because these parasites are potentially very serious and harmful to your pet, this is a major benefit of using chemical therapy as a treatment method.

Chemical Therapy Risks

There are also risks associated with chemical therapy treatment for dog heartworms. In addition to the major risk of toxicity due to carcass buildup, chemical therapy can be ineffective when not used appropriately. The chemicals may cause other harm to your pet if administered by a veterinarian who doesn't use them appropriately. Additionally, they are quite expensive, and if not used effectively they may otherwise be a waste. For this reason, it's crucial that you be sure that the veterinarian who is administering the chemical therapy to your pet be qualified and experienced before you agree to go along with the treatment procedure.

Chemical therapy generally is quite expensive, as it involves the costs of the chemical treatments themselves as well as the laboratory time and your vet's labor costs as well. It is much cheaper and also healthier for your dog if you take the necessary precautions to ensure that he doesn't develop heartworms in the first place. Oral heartworm medications are very effective at eliminating heartworms before they're able to infect your pet's system.