We remain open to provide care for your pets. We are following the direction of government and regulatory authorities and have implemented hospital and visit protocols to keep both you and our team safe. For regular updates on our hours and visit protocols, please follow our social media platforms.
Heartworm is a potentially fatal disease that is transmitted by mosquitoes. In Saskatchewan, we are very lucky not to have heartworm despite a significant number of mosquitoes that are present during the summer months. Your dog can be exposed to heartworm if you travel to other provinces. Please contact Cumberland Veterinary Clinic if you will be travelling, so we can discuss your options for heartworm prevention. The best thing that you can do to prevent heartworm is by using monthly preventative medications, which are easily administered at home.
Most dogs will not show symptoms until the infestation is quite advanced. Symptoms can include coughing and exercise intolerance. If the infestation progresses, it can cause serious health issues such as blocking blood flow within the heart.
How do dogs get heartworm?
Heartworm is transmitted by mosquitoes. When the mosquito bites an infected animal, they ingest microscopic baby worms called microfilaria. After a period of 10-14 days, they will mature into larvae, which have now reached the infective stage. When the mosquito bites your dog, the larvae can enter your dog’s bloodstream and eventually, end up in the heart. It can take up to 6 months for the larvae to mature into adult heartworms. The adult worms can live within your dog’s heart for 5 to 7 years, which means that the worm burden can worsen each summer through continued exposure.
What are the treatment options for heartworms?
Treatment options depend on several factors, such as your dog’s age and the severity of the infestation. The more severe the infestation is, the harder it is to treat and the risk of complications increases. Treatment of heartworm is not something that we deal with regularly, due to the lack of heartworm in our province. If your pet has travelled to other provinces and you are concerned that they have contracted heartworm, please contact Cumberland Veterinary Clinic. The first step is to check a heartworm blood test.
Why is recovery and heartworm treatment challenging?
Treating heartworm is challenging since the worms are residing in the heart. Heartworm treatment requires frequent visits to the clinic and regular follow up. If your dog has tested positive for heartworm, please contact us to discuss your options for treatment.
Due to the close contact that our work requires, we have taken additional measures to protect you and our team while providing care for your furry family members.
The following changes are effective as of Monday, March 30, 2020:
1. We are currently operating a “closed waiting room” policy and "drop off" policy to protect our clients and staff. We ask that you follow these steps:
a. When you arrive, please remain stay in the hallway and use your cell phone to call us at 306.373.3500. Please ensure your pet is either in a carrier or has a collar that can be attached to a leash.
b. Once an exam room is ready, we will come to take your pet from you and into an exam room and call you to take a history and talk about any concerns.
c. Once the exam is over we call you with our recommended treatment plan, we can then arrange to take payment over the phone./p>
d. We will then bring your pet out to you in the hallway.
2. We are giving priority to urgent or sick pets, as well as time-sensitive puppy/kitten vaccinations. All other services please give us a call and we can decide if the appointment can be done at a later time.
3. We are still OPEN with the following hours: Monday through Friday: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm, Saturday: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm, & closed on Sundays
4. If you are ordering food or medications, please allow 2-4 business days as our suppliers are dealing with increased demand and are trying to fill orders as quickly as possible. We will advise you as soon as your order arrives and you will be asked to pay over the phone. Please call us when you arrive to pick up your order, and we will place your order outside on the table or bring to you in the hallway.
5. For the time being, we are not accepting cash as payment. Credit cards and debit card payments are still available.
Following the recommendations of our government and medical experts, we are doing our best to practice social distancing within the constraints of our roles. As such, we have taken measures to avoid both contracting and facilitating the spread of this virus.
Thank you for helping us be diligent for everyone's safety. As we have heard from all levels of government, the situation is fluid and any updates will be provided as changes occur.
- Your dedicated team at Cumberland Veterinary Clinic