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Posted on 05-12-2016

Parasites and Your Pet

Question: Is your pet at risk for any of the following:
A) Fleas
B) Ticks
C) Worms
D) All of the above
Answer: All of the above! (And they ALL can be tough to spot!)

Schedule your pet’s annual checkup today to be sure your pet is healthy!

Is your dog very tired? Is your cat eating less than usual? These seemingly minor changes may mean your pet has a flea allergy, an internal parasite infection, or a tick-related disease.

Let’s talk about fleas first. The majority of pets don’t have fleas—but many have been bitten because fleas are everywhere! Yes, fleas live outdoors but they can live indoors too – even in really clean homes – year-round in any climate. Fleas will gladly hitch a ride on your pet into your house. And all it takes is one flea bite (specifically the fleas saliva), to set off a full blown skin allergy. Pets may scratch their sides, neck or even lick their paws until they’re red and painful. What pet wants to move around or eat when feeling this miserable?

Internal parasites (such as roundworms, tapeworms and whipworms) can infect your pet in a number of ways. Sometimes, it’s hard to know if your pet has them. But left untreated, worms can be dangerous to your pet’s internal organs. They can even cause your pet to lose blood.

Ticks are tricky. Even when you check your pet for ticks they can be tough to find because they’re small and hide well in dark fur. But it’s crucial to find ticks and remove them quickly. Why? Some ticks carry bacteria that cause disease (such as Lyme disease, but there are many others). And all you need is one undetected tick bite for your pet to become infected. They can become sick and develop kidney problems. At times, these diseases can be fatal.

Ugh! Is there any good news?

Yes!

At Zionsville Animal Hospital, we’re experts when it comes to flea allergies, tick and internal parasite checks. Even if your pet is on regular monthly preventive, it is still important for us to make sure your pet is healthy. Make an appointment for your pet’s annual checkup today – we’ll give them a thorough physical exam from nose to tail. Let’s also confirm the prevention you’re using is right for your pet! Give us a call today at 317-873-1833!

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