Dog Health Issues – Poor Economy is Hurting Dog Health Care

Dog Health Issues – Dogs are getting less health care because of the poor economy.  One of the biggest concerns is the increase in heartworms in pets.  The heartworm condition can be easily prevented by either injections every 6 months or by oral medicines.

The heartworm condition is caused by a specific type of parasite.  It is transmitted by mosquitoes. 

The heartworm disease can be extremely painful if not fatal to our dogs.  After the mosquito has bitten the dog, the resulting larvae will get into the blood stream and eventually to the heart.  As the larvae multiply, the dog’s heart and entire system will fail. 

It is quite obvious that preventative measures provide the best solution in protecting our dogs.  But when people are hurt by money issues at home, this type of care is often ignored.  This is so sad for our pets.

I read an article on this topic entitled “Animals Getting Less Health Care in Poor Economy.”  It is written by Jennifer M. Cline.  Here is a quote from the article:

The poor economy is having a negative influence on the health care of animals. Veterinarians and animal shelters have reported an increase in illnesses, especially heartworm, along with a decrease in veterinary visits and preventive treatments.

“Before working at this practice, I worked at a much busier clinic,” said T.J. Sharma, doctor of veterinary medicine and Ph.D.

“At that time, I only saw one or two cases of heartworm. Since the decline in the economy, I am seeing them much more frequently,” said Sharma, owner of Blue Cross Animal Hospital. “I have already treated 12 dogs this year.”

Heartworms are dangerous parasites that can be potentially fatal to animals. It only takes a single bite from a mosquito to infect a dog.

“When a mosquito carries heartworm larvae, they are microscopic,” he said. “After a dog is infected, the larvae start reproducing and can grow up to 10 inches.”

The adult heartworms spread throughout the dog’s heart, lungs and blood vessels and cause an array of health problems.

The entire article can be read here.

Ms. Cline does a good job of pointing out how we can protect our pets from this disease, one of the biggest dog health issues we face.  She also discusses how the fact that more infected dogs are causing the disease to spread more quickly.

What are your comments on this issue?  I know it is tough when home finances are tight.  This is especially true if you must decide whether to feed your family or give your dog the preventative medicine it needs.  As you very well know, the cost of treating the heartworm disease is much higher than the cost of preventative care.  I wish everyone the very best.

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