Watson here filling in for Kyra. I was chilling out in the kitchen with my mom as all of the Thanksgiving activities begin and I took that time to ask her some common questions I hear from some of my puppy pals.
Fleas don’t live in the winter so pets don’t need flea prevention in the winter. FALSE! Several different life stages of a flea can live for months in the environment. An adult flea can lay up 40 eggs per day, but if your pet is protected and the flea dies you have stopped the beginning of the flea life cycle! I’m glad that I get monthly flea and tick prevention! Who wants to take that chance?
Heartworms can be transmitted from dog to dog. FALSE! Heartworms are passed through a bite from a mosquito (which can often be seen indoors in the winter). Your pet must be bitten by an infected mosquito to get heartworms. I’m also glad that I am given monthly heartworm prevention, I’d like to stay healthy!!
If your pet’s nose is warm/dry/cold/wet means they are sick. FALSE! This is a common misconception. My nose varies in temperature throughout the day and can depend on my hydration. Having a warm, dry nose does not mean I’m sick.
It’s best to let your female dog have a litter of puppies before spaying. FALSE! Letting your female dog (or cat) go through one heat cycle (with or without having puppies) increases her chances by 7-8% of having mammary cancer (breast cancer.) And after going through two heat cycles, a dog has a 1 in 4 chance of developing mammary cancer during her life. Whew, all of that math and statistics can be scary. I checked with my big sis, Kyra, and I ‘m happy to report she was spayed before her first heat cycle!
People can’t get animal parasites. FALSE! There are some intestinal parasites that us pets can have that our owners can get. For example roundworms can cause blindness or hookworms can cause skin lesions. That is pretty scary stuff, and also why it’s recommended to check a fecal sample on at least an yearly basis if not twice a year!
So don’t believe everything you hear or read online. The best advice comes from your knowledgeable veterinarian, heck they went to school way longer than Dr. Google! Oh yeah and I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving!