Many people get confused with the mind-boggling array of parasite preventatives now available in the Australian market. Spot ons, injectables, oral chews and tablets make up the combinations of products we can use to treat our furry friends.
In our dogs we have three main classes of parasites; heart worms, intestinal worms and external parasites (which are mainly fleas in Victoria). For our canine companions, heartworm is the most important as it is the one that can kill your dog. It is transmitted by mosquitos and consists of tiny microscopic worms being injected into the blood stream, which then develop into large adult worms. The reason that this parasite is fatal is because even if we kill worms with drugs, there is no way for them to exit the body. Fleas and intestinal worms can all be expelled from the body, whilst dead heartworms will block up the vessels and can result in sudden death.
At Toorak Road Veterinary Clinic we recommend a yearly injectable heartworm preventative for this reason. It means that if you forget to give a flea or worm product, they are still covered for the deadly parasite. The injection is generally given at the same time as our annual health check and vaccinations.
We treat fleas and intestinal worms with 3-monthly oral products, meaning owners only have to administer treatment four times a year. If your dog is tricky, we can even give them for you if you come into the clinic and see one of our nurses.
Bravecto is a fantastic 3-monthly flea and tick oral tablet, and Milbemax is generally our choice for intestinal worming. Alternatively, we use Drontal chewables for worming if your dog is a real foody!
Alternatively, some clients prefer to use all in one products, such as Sentinel Spectrum. In order to be covered for heartworm, these ‘complete’ products must be given monthly – and owners need to be diligent about this from the perspective of heartworm! Many of our monthly products offer fairly comprehensive protection from parasites, however there is not a single product that covers absolutely all of our potential parasitic problems.
Please feel free to come in and chat to one of our team about your pooch’s parasite prevention program!