Summer may be coming to a close, but all those pesky mosquitoes are still going to be buzzing around for a bit. Aside from causing those infinitely itchy red bumps that plague your legs following a nighttime stroll, mosquitoes are also known to transmit a number of serious diseases to humans and animals. Stock up on mosquito spray for yourself, and read on for tips on how to protect your pet.
The National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS) has joined forces with the American Mosquito Control Association (AMCA) in an effort to raise awareness about the dangers of mosquito-borne diseases that can be harmful to the health of not only humans—but their animal companions as well.
Estimates claim that over 1 million dogs in the United States have been infected with the potentially fatal heartworm disease—an infection transmitted by the mosquito. Although the mosquito host is essential for the development of the immature worms that cause heartworm disease, it does not transmit them directly to the animal through the initial bite. The immature worms leave the mosquito in a fluidic substance that is deposited on the dog’s skin. The worms then invade the hole in the skin made through the bite from the mosquito.
“This is a completely preventable disease that devastates pets,” said Joe Conlon, Technical Advisor of the AMCA. “Eliminating mosquitoes around your house in addition to using approved medications can ensure your pet remains a healthy companion.”
To lessen your pets’ exposure to mosquitoes, NAPPS and the AMCA suggest the following:
“Heartworm preventatives are a proactive approach to keeping your [pet's] health and wellness at its best,” said John D’Ariano, president of NAPPS. “Before administering any type of preventative medication, it’s important to always consult your veterinarian to determine what is best for your pet.”
Curious to know more? Learn all there is to know about mosquitoes at the AMCA website.