iStock_000001647782_MediumKeeping your pet healthy and parasite-free is a continuous responsibility of pet ownership. Fleas, ticks, and heartworms are yearlong threats to your pet, and the diseases they carry can cause your pet serious discomfort and illness, even beyond their recognized “season”.

At Naperville Animal Hospital, we encourage you to be proactive with your pet’s health. If your pet is not already on  parasite preventatives, the time to start is now. If you have already started a preventative treatment plan for your pet, be sure to continue with a parasite preventative throughout the course of your pet’s life. Parasite preventatives matter to your pet’s longevity and well-being; here’s why…


Heartworm infection is transmitted by infected mosquitoes that deposit larva into your pet’s bloodstream when your pet is bitten. The larvae develop into adult worms that then reside in your pet’s heart and lungs, causing heart disease and respiratory problems over time.

Heartworm is a very serious disease. In all instances, it is fatal to cats; and treatment for dogs is both risky and very expensive. In fact, you can buy approximately 7 years worth of heartworm preventative for what one treatment costs.

Year-round protection is the best course of action to control the risks of heartworm disease. We recommend Tri-Heart or Heartgard, each of which are given as monthly doses in a chewable tablet form, but also offer Pro-Heart 6 (an injection given to your pet every 6 months). Make sure your pet is tested every year for the disease, as the cycle can take upwards of 6 months to complete.

Fleas and Ticks

Fleas are found throughout the country and can be contracted by your pet year-round. Both your pets and your family can be affected by these troublesome parasites which can cause skin irritations and transmit a number of harmful diseases, such as cat scratch fever, tapeworm, and even the plague.

Ticks, too, can attach themselves to your pet at any time throughout the year, although some North American climates force these parasites into dormancy during a few months. However, that doesn’t mean your pet shouldn’t have year-round protection from ticks and the illnesses they can cause.

In addition to performing random tick checks and regularly grooming your pet, it is recommended that you keep your pet on a yearly tick preventative. Doing so will help protect against not only Lyme disease, but also other tick-borne diseases such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichiosis, and Babesiosis.

Flea and Tick preventatives usually go hand in hand. The products that we recommend and offer for preventing flea and tick related illnesses are Frontline Plus, Vectra 3D (a topical treatment), and NexGard, which is a chewable preventative. If these products don’t seem to work for your pet then we also offer Revolution Trifexis and K9 Advantix. We also carry Sentinel, which treats fleas, heartworms, and other parasites.

If your pet is currently not on a parasite prevention plan, or has lapsed on his or her dosage, contact us immediately to begin a new regimen. It’s never too late to begin protecting your pet from parasites and the illnesses they carry.

We are currently offering 20% off of all prescription flea and tick preventatives during the month of July so contact us today to discuss options and begin a year-round preventative treatment plan for your pet. Your pet’s health is important to you, and taking steps to keep your pet free from parasites and infections is a critical part of being a pet owner.