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What is lungworm?
Lungworm ( Angiostrongylus Vasorum) is a parasite which can infect all types and breeds of dog, but more commonly younger dogs. The adult Lungworm lives in the lungs and the major blood vessels that supply the lungs, and if left untreated can cause severe, often fatal, problems.
This parasite was once only found in isolated regions but recently has become considered a high risk threat in many areas of the country.
How does infection occur?
The parasite is carried by common garden pests, slugs and snails. Infection happens when the dog ingests the pests. This can happen if they are foraging in the undergrowth, eating grass, playing with toys which have been left out in the garden or drinking water from puddles or streams.
What are the most common symptoms of Lungworm?
– Breathing problems which can often be coupled with coughing / retching.
– Fatigue, tiring more quickly than normal and/or unwillingness to play.
– Slower blood clotting times, this could lead to nosebleeds, bleeding into the eyes, and slower healing of even minor scratches and wounds.
– Loss of appetite, owners often seeing a marked weight loss.
– Spinal pain.
BEWARE – ALTHOUGH IT IS OFTEN YOUNG DOGS THAT ARE INFECTED DUE TO THEIR INCREASED CURIOSITY, ALL DOGS OF ALL SHAPES AND SIZES CAN BE INFECTED.
Take action early, if you have seen your dog ingest a slug or snail contact us at Park Hall Veterinary Clinic. If you notice your pet has become ill or changes behaviour then do not hesitate to contact us for advice. Remember early action could prevent the death of your much loved dog.
For preventative treatment, at Park Hall Veterinary Clinic, we strongly advise monthly application of “Advocate”, for more details contact us at the surgery or go on to the following link www.lungworm.com