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October 31, 2016
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October 31, 2016

Vet’s Corner

Lungworm (Angiostrongylus vasorum) is a type of parasitic worm that can infect dogs. 

The worms are carried by slugs and snails which are eaten (on purpose or by accident) by a dog.  The worm then travels through the gut wall into the bloodstream and lives in the heart and the major blood vessels supplying the lungs.  Vet-picture
Lungworm infection can display a wide variety of non-specific symptoms, including weight loss; breathing difficulties; coughing (sometimes bringing up blood); lethargy; clotting disorders/persistent bleeding; general illness; poor appetite; vomiting and diarrhoea; and if left untreated can be fatal.  As signs are non-specific diagnosis can be challenging but often will include diagnostic imaging of the chest along with faecal and/or blood samples.  Although this area is generally considered to have a low risk for lungworm infection, cases do occur.  Treatment of clinical disease is normally possible but prevention is better than cure.
Lungworm infection can be treated with either a spot-on treatment or a tablet, administered every four weeks, please discuss with your vet for more details.

If concerned about your animals, please call Sprinz & Nash.  Vets are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Dr Aurelia Verdin

BVetMed MRCVS

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