The Best Treatment is Prevention.
One bite from an infected mosquito could put your pet at risk of contracting heartworms — foot-long parasitic worms that live in your pet’s heart, lungs, and associated blood vessels. These parasites can cause severe lung disease, heart failure, and damage to other organs in the body.
Treatment for heartworm-positive dogs costs thousands of dollars, but preventative medications are available at TCAP for as little as $5 per month. Let a TCAP team member know you’re interested in heartworm testing and prevention, or note it on your pet’s vaccine/sterilization paperwork.
Low-Cost Heartworm Prevention
Heartworm Test $20
A simple blood draw performed during any of our vaccine events. Results ready in approximately 10-15 minutes.
TriHeart $30 - $40
A monthly chewable to keep your pet protected from heartworms, and intestinal parasites like roundworms and hookworms.
A monthly chewable prevention to keep your pet protected from heartworms, fleas, and intestinal parasites (roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms).
Make Heartworm Prevention a Priority
Prevent Heartworms Before They Happen
Cats & Dogs Need Prevention
Both cats and dogs should stay on heartworm prevention year-round. Prevention can begin at six weeks old for puppies and eight weeks old for kittens.
Administer Prevention Monthly
Administer your pet’s prevention monthly via chewable tablets or topical solutions. Need help remembering when to give the medication? Sign up for our email alerts.
Begin your heartworm-preventative measures with a heartworm test!
Dogs older than six months of age need a negative heartworm test performed by TCAP, to receive prevention from TCAP’s veterinarians.
Frequently Asked Questions About Heartworms
Yes! Cats and dogs need heartworm prevention year-round. This is especially true in Texas, where our climate is ideal for mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are not limited to the outdoors, these small flying insects often find their way into homes.
Dogs: Dogs are the natural host for heartworms, which means that heartworms living inside your dog will mature into adults, mate and produce offspring. Infected dogs can harbor hundreds of worms and impact the dogs quality of life. If left untreated, heartworm disease can lead to death. Treatment of heartworm disease in dogs can cost more than $2,500 on average, and often your pups organs have already been damaged. For this reason, the best course of action is to prevention.
Cats: Cats are an atypical host of heartworms; however, when infected the worms can cause real damage to the cat’s respiratory tract. Since there is no approved treatment for heartworm positive cats, prevention is key.
If your pet tests positive for heartworms at TCAP, we will refer you to your full-service veterinarian for treatment options.
It’s important for your to limit your pet’s exercise until they are treated. Clumps of heartworms dislodged during activity can cause the same effect on your pet as a blood clot.
It’s recommended to start your puppy or kitten on heartworm prevention as early as the heartworm preventative product label allows. Prevention specifically for puppies and kittens is available via TCAP’s online pharmacy. These products are recommended as early as 6 weeks old for puppies and 8 weeks old for kittens.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) requires heartworm preventatives be prescribed by a veterinarian.
Before prescribing the medication, a heartworm test is conducted to ensure the pet doesn’t already have adult worms as giving preventatives to heartworm positive pets can lead to rare, but potentially severe, life-threatening reactions.
Adult female heartworms living in an infected dog, fox, coyote, or wolf produce offspring in the animal’s bloodstream. When a mosquito takes a bite from these infected animals, they pick up these baby worms. Then, when the mosquito bites another susceptible animal, the larvae are deposited into the new animal.
Once inside their new host, it takes six months for the worms to develop into reproducing adults, so that their lifecycle can continue. Heartworms can live for 5-7 years in dogs and 2-3 years in cats.
To learn more about heartworms visit The American Heartworm Society’s website.