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Dr. Ann M.
Dr. Ann M., Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4831
Experience:  ER and general medicine Veterinarian since 2005
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Our dog, a 5 year old terrier mix, was given a heartworm

Customer Question

Our dog, a 5 year old terrier mix, was given a heartworm test in the vet's office. It was negative. An antigen test was run and it was positive. Bandit has been on doxycycline for 3 months (month on/month off). He has since be retested with the same results. Is there any other reason, he would test positive? We are going for x-rays and another antigen test tomorrow. He has never missed a heartworm treatment.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. There are all sorts of infestations your vet's terrier can pick up. I'll have you talk to the Veterinarian who'll sort out what is wrong and help you decide what to do about it. What is the terrier's name?
Customer: Bandit
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Bandit?
Customer: He goes for a 3 mile walk everyday, has a great coat, is playful and loves to chase possoms! He does not have any symptoms of heartworm. This has been going on for 7 months.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 7 months ago.

Hi there and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed, internship-trained veterinarian with 11 years experience in general medicine and emergency and critical care medicine and I would be happy to assist you. Please be patient as there may be slight delays in responses as I research your pet's issue.

Have you had him since he was a puppy? What heartworm preventative is he on, and where did you purchase from- online, or from your vet?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
We've had Bandit since he was a puppy. We adopted him from the humane society. Bandit was getting Proheart injections. Now he is taking Heartgard.
Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 7 months ago.

Okay. How long has he been on Heartgard?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
5 months
Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 7 months ago.

Okay. So, basically, the dog got heartworm disease while on ProHeart, then. If you are can prove at your vet clinic that your dog got the injection every 6 months without even being a day late, then the company who makes ProHeart will pay for heartworm treatment. It is possible to get Heartworm disease while on ANY kind of heartworm preventative because they are all over 99% effective, NOT 100% effective. It appears your dog was in the unfortunate less that 1% where it is not effective. That stinks! Since it has been less than a year that your dog has had it, there is not likely to be any permanent damage, and I would start treatment right away. But I would contact Proheart through your veterinarian once you have obtained the documentation showing that you were never even a day late on the 6-month injections. (If you were ever longer than 6 months between injections, then that is how the dog got heartworms... but I suspect it is more likely to be a failure of the product). I am so sorry you are dealing with this! I hope Bandit starts treatment soon and that you can get the company to pay for the treatment, which should not be difficult.

I hope that I have answered your question thoroughly. If you still have questions, please reply. If you feel that I have provided anything less than excellent service, please reply to me first before rating my service and let me know how I can better assist you. Thank you for your question; it has been a pleasure being able to provide assistance. Bonuses are not necessary, but are appreciated, as they go directly to me rather than to the website. Best of luck.

Expert:  Dr. Ann M. replied 7 months ago.

By the way... with two antigen tests, he definitely has heartworm disease... there's no other explanation. Best of luck.

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