Protect Your Pet and Your Family
Preventing the spread of disease and illness among pets and people is one of our main goals at Minnetonka Animal Hospital. Fortunately, there are extremely effective ways to protect your entire family.
Fleas and Ticks
Fleas and ticks are a big concern for pet owners. These pests are not only irritating, they can also cause severe health problems if left untreated. While our clinic is well versed in the infectious diseases of Minnesota we also keep in mind our clients that travel to other states and the risk factors therein. When traveling to other parts of the country we recommend that our clients contact an area veterinarian to find out if there are specific risk factors endemic to the area. It’s best to consult one of our veterinarians to develop a year-round prevention plan for your pet. Our recommendations vary based on age, breed, and lifestyle and may include Lyme vaccinations, Frontline topical, an oral Nexgard preventive, or Revolution topical.
Heartworms are harmful parasites that can be fatal. Transmitted by infected mosquitoes, heartworm disease is caused by worms that live in the heart, lungs, and related blood vessels. Lung disease, heart failure, internal organ damage, or even death can result. Annual testing and the use of a year-round monthly preventive is critical to protecting your pet (bloodwork is required in order to prescribe heartworm medication).
Intestinal parasites (worms) are a common concern among pet owners. The most frequently occurring intestinal parasites are hookworms, roundworms, whipworms, giardia, coccidia and tapeworms. Although their effects range from mild to severe, it’s important to know worms can be transmitted to people, so prevention is key. We recommend screening as part of your pet’s regular wellness exam and suggest a year-round intestinal parasite control for all dogs and cats.
A zoonotic disease is one that can be spread between animals and humans, some examples are: ringworm, toxoplasmosis and rabies. According to the American Animal Hospital Association, nearly 64 million U.S. households have at least one furry family member, so it’s important to be aware of the risks. Children, pregnant women, and those with weakened immune systems should be extra careful.
Common ways to contract a zoonotic disease include:
- Coming into contact with saliva, blood, urine, or feces of an infected animal
- Being bitten by a tick or mosquito
- Eating or drinking unsafe food items (e.g., unpasteurized milk, undercooked meat, unwashed fruits and vegetables)
Fortunately, most zoonotic diseases can be prevented with good judgment, proper hygiene, regular pet exams, proper vaccinations, and year-round parasite control. For more information, check out the following resources: