A simple way you can help keep your pet healthy is by protecting him or her against parasites. Heartworms, fleas, ticks, and other internal and external parasites are much more than just pests; they can cause life-threatening conditions in your pet—and cause severe, potentially fatal, health problems for you and your family. We will recommend the best preventive regimen for your pet, based on lifestyle and risk factors. We can also provide expert advice on keeping your whole household safe from parasitic infection. Set up an appointment with us to discuss parasite prevention, or call us to refill your pet’s medication. Protect your pet and your family today!

Internal Parasites

DEWORMING

We follow the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations for pet deworming.

Internal parasites shed only intermittently, and so do not always show up in a fecal exam. Because of this, it is recommended to do both fecal testing and deworming for your pet once a year. It may be necessary to treat some animals more frequently. The most common parasites are roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms. Most kittens and puppies are born with roundworms and hookworms because these parasites can cross the placenta from the mother to the unborn babies. Signs of roundworms and hookworms are bloating, weight loss, and diarrhea. In the case of hookworms, the diarrhea is often bloody. Both roundworms and hookworms can be transmitted to humans, which can cause serious and sometimes life-threatening disease. Tapeworms are usually obtained from ingesting infected fleas, but can also be transferred by the ingestion of infected rodents. Dogs and cats can also contract other internal parasites, such as giardia, coccidia, and whipworms.

HEARTWORM DISEASE

Heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal disease that is transmitted from mosquitoes to dogs and cats. Heartworm disease can be found in all 50 states, even Washington. At Helping Hands, we believe that all dogs and cats should be protected from this disease. The treatment for this disease is painful and expensive, but prevention is easy and cost efficient. The products that we use for heartworm prevention are given monthly and protect against heartworms as well as other more common parasites.

Fleas and Ticks

Fleas and ticks may be a problem at any time of the year, so remember to watch for excessive scratching, especially around the tail and ears. We carry a variety of safe, proven, and guaranteed preventatives to help you control flea problems.

FleasTicks2Even though there are many over-the-counter flea products, their toxicity prevents us from recommending them. Since retail stores cannot obtain vet-only label products directly and legally from the manufacturer, the authenticity of these products is questionable. Our staff is knowledgeable in flea control products and would be very happy to help you choose an effective program that will best meet the needs of you and your pet.

Evidence of fleas, ticks, or internal parasites may sometimes be observable, but sometimes they are not. For this reason, veterinary examinations and parasite testing are important methods used to detect parasites and improve your pet’s health. Monthly parasite preventive medications can protect pets from fleas, ticks, heartworms, and intestinal parasites like roundworms and hookworms. Don’t leave your pet unprotected from these predators.