April is Parasite Prevention Month!
Though some days it is hard to believe, the weather is getting warmer and the flowers will not be the only things blooming. As the temperature rises, ticks and fleas start hopping again, and the roundworms and tapeworms are on the move. Parasites are a seasonal problem for most pets and for some others, they are all-year-round. Every pet has its own risks and circumstances. There are a great deal of products on the market and it can be difficult to choose the right one. To help eliminate the confusion, a visit to your veterinarian is the first step is getting the right program. We will help you navigate through the various products, the pros and cons, and the regulations and best practices for each one.
Our custom plans can include a range of products and services, including:
- Annual Wellness Exam: if your pet has not had its annual exam yet, there is no better time! As part of the exam we will check for signs of parasite infection and discuss prevention with you.
- Lyme Disease Testing: Lyme disease is increasing in Nova Scotia, with several hot spots around the province. The signs of Lyme disease can be variable and sometimes hard to see. A blood test is a needed to diagnose Lyme disease, but is only reliable 4-6 weeks after the initial infection. Ticks are the carriers of Lyme disease, so if you pet appears unwell 4-6 weeks after a tick bite, the simple blood test is recommended.
- Parasite and Parasite-born Disease Testing: not only can the parasites themselves cause illness, but so can many of the organisms that hitch a ride on the parasites. There are a range of tests available that we would be happy to discuss with you.
- Fecal Analysis: many internal parasites pass microscopic eggs or other structures in your pet's droppings. A simple decal floatation can quickly determine if there is infection, and follow-up tests can be used to confirm successful treatment.
- Flea/Pest Control Products: There is a wide range of drugs and pesticides, both prescription and non-prescription, that are available to be used on your pets and in your house to either eliminate or control infestations.
Make life easy for yourself: Role your parasite prevention into one of our Annual Health Care Plans!
Did you know?
- Soap can wash off many of the topical products. Let us know if your pet gets regular baths so we can recommend a product that is not washed off.
- Though indoor pets tend to be at a lower risk, they can still get into problems. When this happens successful treatment requires treating all the pets in the house and the environment too.
- Most products are tailored to your pet's weight. If you don't know your pets weight, please drop in for a quick weigh-in!
- Some products can be very hazardous if put on the wrong pet. Please read the label very carefully and follow all instructions given!
- There are times when your veterinarian will recommend you follow a program that is different than what is on the label. This is done for particular problems and in consultation with the maker of the product. If there is any confusion, please check back with your veterinarian.
- Some over-counter products available on the market have had a significant number of adverse reactions reported. With any drug or pesticide applied to your pet, a reaction is possible. Please call you veterinarian if you suspect any problem and bring the product packaging with you to the appointment.