In recent weeks, we have diagnosed a dog with lungworm who sadly passed away as a result of the damage this parasite can cause. Lungworm otherwise known as Angiostrongylus Vasorum in dogs is a parasite that resides in the heart and pulmonary arteries and can therefore be fatal. Lungworm is increasing in the UK however is still less common than other parasites such as fleas, ticks, roundworms and tapeworms.
Dogs can become infected by this parasite through ingestion of an infected slug or snail. When your dog if off the lead or roaming the garden you may not necessary see your dog ingest any slugs or snails, as they may do it accidentally when eating grass or drinking from outdoor water bowls.
Symptoms of this parasite can vary between cases, however the most common symptoms may include; coughing, lethargy, weight loss, poor appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea, excess bleeding from minor wounds or seizures. Diagnosis of this parasite can be determined through either a faecal test or blood test.
Prevention is key with lungworm and can be prevented through monthly prescription only worming treatment, contact us if you have any concerns via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
or wish to order your pet’s preventative treatment visit www.mkvetgroup.co.uk/repeat-prescriptions/
. Our Healthy Pet Care plans include covers against this parasite as well as many other parasites and diseases through a simple monthly direct debit.
It is also important to clean up after your dog has passed faeces as this helps to prevent the spread of the parasite. Picking up toys that have been left outside, and outdoor food and water bowls helps to minimise exposure to slugs and snails.