Useful info about dogs:

Heartworm medication

"Giving your dog heartworm medication when climatic conditions prevent transmission is not only pointless, but dangerous for your dog. Why would anyone want to give their beloved pet toxic chemicals when there is absolutely no valid reason to do so?"

Home

About Carole

Your dogs suffer in silence because they cant tell you about . . .
their painful teeth    |     their flea problems    |     or their allergies

Follow these links and soak up more free information to gain a happier, healthier dog who thinks you are the best person on the planet!

 


Only Natural Pet Easy
Defense Flea & Tick Tag

A safe, chemical-free
way to keep harmful pests off
of your pet that utilizes
your pet's own energy to
create a natural barrier to fleas,
ticks and mosquitoes

 

Tell a friend:

 

 

 

 

 

 


Glyco-Flex Joint
90 Dog Tablets

 

 

 

 


Dogswell Happy Hips
Duck - 15 oz

 

 

 

 


Halo VitaGlo
for Hips & Joints

 

 

 

 


In Clover K9 Connectin
Joint Supplement

 

 

 

 


Zukes Hip Action
Dog Treats Beef - 6 oz

 

 

 

 


Pet Naturals of Vermont

Home  |  Here's a check list of questions you should be asking your vet
` Does year round heartworm medicating bring extra protection?
Are heartworm preventatives safe?  |  Adverse reactions to heartworm medications  |  The Potential risks and side effects of heartworm medication at a glance  |  Label warnings  |  Is your dog healthy enough for heartworm medications?  |  Multidrug Sensitive Dog Breeds
Reporting Adverse Events  |  Heartworm prevention  |  Conclusion

This section - Part 2 -
Heartworm medication
Options to fear-based recommendations

If you haven't read
Part 1 of this article called "Heartworm medication: truths, omissions and profits"
, please read it now, unless you completely understand how and when heartworms are transmitted.

Part 2 is designed to give you options to the fear-based recommendations commonly used by large dug companies with huge marketing budgets to push year round heartworm protection. Here we suggest ways, if you want them, to limit or eliminate heartworm drugs.

Part 1 of this article has already determined that heartworm transmission is dependent on the following three factors being present:

  • A hungry female mosquito of an appropriate specie.
  • Sustained warm temperatures of 80° Fahrenheit or above (day and night) for a minimum of two weeks or more.
  • Standing water

As expected, the dark areas of the map above, show that the most heartworm cases per clinic, are found in the hot, humid South-Eastern US, especially the Atlantic and Gulf coasts and the Mississippi Delta.

Please don’t let the map scare you. If published seasonally, map colors would pale significantly during cool months. Also remember that you’re seeing generalities, not specifics. A clinic near a rural pond will likely have many cases while an urban clinic 15 miles away may have a much lower incidence. Maps are general. Determine your own microclimate.

Heartworm researchers Drs. David Knight and James Lok in “Seasonality of Heartworm Infections and Implications for Chemoprophylaxis” show only two areas in the US requiring year round heartworm medications, e.g. the southernmost areas of Florida and Texas. Houston, New Orleans and similar areas are shown requiring medications for nine months only.

Other states range from three to seven months. Drs. Knight and Lok wrote: “For nearly 80% of the states, the potential for heartworm transmission is limited to six months or less.”

I am a researcher and holistic health advocate for pets, not a vet. However, with your dog's best interest at heart I suggest if you are contemplating using heartworm medication, that you do your own extensive research first, and take into consideration the following factors:

  • Your dogs general health
  • Where you live in relation to the above map
  • Your lifestyle and whether that involves traveling with your dog, again in relation to the map above
  • The climate and time of year

Return to top

Here's a check list of questions you should be asking your vet

Expect an open-mind and respect from your vet, or find another vet.

  • If he or she uses a blanket approach and recommends all year round protection? This is either a lazy or profit driven approach.
  • If he or she recommends treatment only when the three basic requirements for transmission above are present
  • If he or she recommends any alternative or holistic products, that give protection without the risk of side effects from chemical products, e.g. Flea Tags.

Return to top

Does year round heartworm medicating bring extra protection?

The answer is definitely no. Giving your dog heartworm medication when climatic conditions prevent transmission is not only pointless, but dangerous for your dog. Why would anyone want to give their beloved pet toxic chemicals when there is absolutely no valid reason to do so?

Only a small percentage of climatic areas in the US meet the correct weather conditions and temperatures for year-round transmission and infection.

Residents in other parts of the country are unnecessarily subsidising drug companies and “preventatives” sellers and, more importantly, exposing their dogs to unnecessary risks to ingesting toxic chemicals.

Return to top

Are heartworm preventatives safe?

We have all seen all those scary photos of worm-strangled hearts, in magazines and on TV. Isn't safe better than sorry? But is that harmless little pill or yummie medical “chewie" really safe? No drug is completely free of risk and adverse reactions.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, 65% of adverse drug reactions and 48% of all reported deaths resulting from drug reactions are caused by heartworm preventatives.

This point is further reinforced in page 17 of The Whole Story About Heartworm PDF, (much of which you may not be told otherwise). These notes were researched and written by Lee Cullens in March 2008

In Memory of Daisy 1997 - 2007
a beloved companion that suffered because of my ignorance and blind
acceptance of advice from those regarded as knowledgeable.

If you have a spare hour or so, Lee Cullens tells it how it is with regard to big business and heartworm medications, its a great read of 61 pages, written by a great lady.

Return to top

Adverse reactions to heartworm medications

Before giving your pet any medication always check it out with the FDA first for any adverse comments, and make sure you read any and all information supplied by the manufacturer. The following adverse reactions have been reported to the FDA by heartworm drug manufacturers:

Heartguard and TriHeartPlus (ivermectin) depression, lethargy, vomiting, anorexia, diarrhea, mydriasis, ataxia staggering, convulsions and hypersalivation.

Interceptor (milbemycin oxime) depression, lethargy, vomiting, anorexia, diarrhea, mydriasis, ataxia staggering, convulsions and hypersalivation and weakness.

Sentinel (milbemycin oxime) vomiting, depression, lethargy, pruritus, urticaria, diarrhea, anorexia, skin congestion, ataxia, convulsions, hypersalivation and weakness.

Revolution (selamectin) (topical spot-on parasiticide for dogs and cats) vomiting, loose stools or diarrhea with or without blood, anorexia, lethargy, salivation, tachypnea, and muscle tremors. Post-approval experience included the above plus pruritis, urticaria, erythema, ataxia, fever, and rare reports of seizures and death in dogs.

Proheart 6 severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis), facial swelling, itching, difficulty breathing, collapse; lethargy (sluggishness); not eating or losing interest in food; any change in activity level; seizures; vomiting and/or diarrhea (with and without blood); weight loss; pale gums, increased thirst or urination, weakness, bleeding, bruising; rare instances of death. This product was voluntarily withdrawn from the market in 2004 because of deaths but has been reintroduced.

Return to top



Keep updated with all that's
right for your best friend!
click on this link
to subscribe to our free mailing list.


The Potential risks and side effects of heartworm medication at a glance

For your convenience we have prepared a list of all potential side effects and symptoms you can expect to see with chemical heartworm medications, depending on which brand you have chosen to use for your pet:

  • Liver problems
  • Pale gums
  • Bleeding and bruising
  • Vomiting
  • Loose stools or diarrhea with or without blood
  • Loss of appetite and anorexia
  • Depression
  • Lethargy and weakness
  • Skin eruptions
  • Dizziness, tremors, seizures, convulsions and paralysis
  • Lack of coordination of muscle movements
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Thyroid problems
  • Fever
  • Coughing, difficulty breathing, tachypnea (rapid breathing), and pneumonia
  • Nose bleeds
  • Irritability
  • Sudden aggressive behavior
  • Nerve damage
  • Fertility problems
  • Ataxia gross lack of coordination of muscle movements
  • Pruritus (itchy dermatologic condition)
  • Urticaria (hives)
  • Mydriasis (excessive pupil dilation)
  • Erythema (skin redness)
  • hypersalivation
  • Sudden death

Return to top

Label warnings

One clue to the possibility of adverse reactions should be the warnings on the labeling, for instance:

  • Call your doctor immediately if accidentally ingested
  • Keep away from children
  • Wash your hands immediately after use administering to your pet

Just ask yourself - if this medication is so dangerous for you and your children, how can it be so good for your dog?

Return to top

Is your dog healthy enough for heartworm medications?

The “Heartworm Prevention” page of the American Animal Hospital Association states: “Healthy kidneys and normal liver functions are essential in metabolising most medications". Many dogs (including my darling Poppie who recently passed away), do not have healthy organ function, yet in my ignorance as in the case of Lee Cullens I was unwittingly giving her heartworm protection medication prescribed by our vet!

That was until I discovered the benefits of using the Only Natural Flea Tags. I wonder how many other unsuspecting owners out there are giving their senior or sick pets heartworm medications in ignorance?

Return to top

Multidrug Sensitive Dog Breeds

Affected breeds

According to WSU's College of Veterinary Medicine, approximately three of every four Collies in the United States have the mutant MDR1 gene. The frequency is about the same in France and Australia, so it is likely that most Collies worldwide have the mutation.

The MDR1 mutation has also been found in Shetland Sheep dogs (Shelties). Australian Shepherds, Old English Sheep dogs, English Shepherds, German Shepherds, Long-haired Whippets, Silken Wind hounds, and a variety of mixed breed dogs.

The only way to know if an individual dog has the mutant MDR1 gene is to have the dog tested. As more dogs are tested, more breeds will probably be added to the list of affected breeds.

 

Affected Breeds Approximate Frequency
Australian Shepherd 50%
Australian Shepherd, Mini 50%
Border Collie 5%
Collie 70%
English Shepherd 15%
German Shepherd 10%
Herding Breed Cross 10%
Long-haired Whippet 65%
McNab 30%
Mixed Breed 5%
Old English Sheepdog 5%
Shetland Sheepdog 15%
Silken Windhound 30%

 

Return to top

Reporting Adverse Events

Call your vet immediately if you suspect your dog has an adverse reaction to heartworm medication. Discuss alternatives and treatment and make sure the reaction is recorded in your dog’s file.

The FDA requires that manufacturers of FDA-approved drugs must forward adverse event reports to the agency. However under-reporting is rife amongst manufacturers and the FDA estimates 99% of adverse reactions go unreported. Click here for FDA reporting instructions.

Return to top

Heartworm prevention

The best prevention from heartworm infection for your four-legged friend is to keep its immune system in tip top condition with a healthy lifestyle, plus the elimination of:

  • Over vaccinating
  • Mass produced commercial dog foods which have very little nutritional value and are full of cheap and very often foreign fillers, e.g. grains and cereals. Home prepared meals are best, preferably raw meat, and meaty raw non weight bearing bones
  • Natural heartworm products such as the Only Natural Flea Tags

Return to top menu

Conclusion

When considering heartworm protection for your dog the most important thing is, do not make decisions out of fear. Don't let anyone, even your vet, intimidate or ridicule you. Be an educated consumer and a rabid advocate for your dog's health.

References:
Dogs Naturally Magazine
The American Heartworm Society
FDA

Return to top menu

Return to the Insights and Articles

This article and information forms part of the Carole's Doggie World Library and is presented for informational purposes only and not intended as an endorsement of any product. The information is not intended to be a substitute for visits to your local veterinarian. Instead, the content offers the reader information researched and written by Carole Curtis for www.carolesdoggieworld.com

If you enjoyed this link, please Like and Share, and leave us a Comment

Want to keep updated with all that's right for your best friend?

Then please click on this link and subscribe to our free mailing list for "Carole's Doggie World" tips & newsletters

 

 

 

 

 


Pet Essences
Arthritis & Achy Pain

 

 

 


Pet Essences
Pain Relief

 

 

 


Overby Farm Hip
Flex Daily Cherry Treats

 

 

 


Overby Farm Hip Flex Cherry Chewable Joint Supplements


Due to promotional sales, the discontinuance of some lines and new lines being introduced, the recommended retail prices
and the availability of some products on this website are subject to change without notice

Home

Your dogs suffer in silence because they cant tell you about . . .
their painful teeth    |     their flea problems    |     or their allergies

Follow these links and soak up the free information to gain a happier, healthier dog who thinks you are the best person on the planet!

Copyright © 2015 Carole Curtis

Website by Carole Curtis with