While I said that we don’t treat for fleas unless there is an infestation, the opposite is true for heartworm. Prevention is imperative as any treatment for heartworm infestation comes with a risk of death to your dog!
Even though the heartworm larva is spread through mosquito bites to your dog, many vets are now recommending year round monthly preventative treatment against heartworm.
If you don’t give any other supplements or medications to your dog, make sure they have their monthly heartworm medication. We use Ivermectin which is one of the primary ingredients of name-brand products like Hartguard Plus. This also treats other internal parasites like hook and round worms. It does not treat for tapeworms.
Some herding dog breeds often can have a sensitivity to Ivermectin which can cause a severe reaction including death. This is due to a defective MDR1 gene. Thankfully Boxers do not carry this gene, so they don’t develop this problem. Our Boxers have never had a negative reaction to Ivermectin products.
For more detailed information on this issue, visit the heartworm experts at https://www.heartwormsociety.org/