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Cats & heartworms

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  • Cats & heartworms

    Do you remember this post?
    "The night before last, Junior became ill. Jean took her to the vet, and they determined that she had probably been bittem by a tick, and had a rare neurological disease. She had to be put to sleep. One of the kittens died shortly after birth, and that left two to take care of. Buck, the big dog, has been filling in as mother as much as possible by cleaning them up, and generally watching over them. They need to be fed with a syringe about every 3 hours."

    I just found out today that "Junior" died of heartworms. The vet said it was very uncommon for a cat to get heartworms, but that's what she had.


  • #2
    Awww, that stinks.
    I don't know how uncommon it really is because in the last few years, the vets have really been pushing heartworm pills for cats.
    Poor Junior.


    • #3
      He might have been talking about our locality. I don't think they ever recommended heartworm pills for the cats. Our dogs are on heartworm pills year around though.



      • #4
        Per veterinary websites that I visit --

        outdoor cats tend to become infected with heartworm much less often than dogs (their guess is a 10% rate compared to the dogs infected in any given area). Indoor cats are much less likely to be infected. Although heartworm is seen less frequently in cats, the disease poses a much greater danger. The outcome is often fatal.
        More vets are now recommending preventive meds for cats. There are more options for dogs, but there is a "chewable" tablet for cats (I hope it comes in a flavor that mine like) and a topical solution that you apply between their shoulder blades (sounds easier than prying their mouths open and trying to pill them).

        Ed, it seems that it's much more difficult to tell when a cat is infected (some tests they use for dogs don't work because the worms don't behave the same way inside cats vs dogs), and vet science is still working on developing a more successful treatment. Poor Junior!


        • #5
          My cats LOVE their heartworm treats.