What Is Dog Life Expectancy After Heartworm Treatment?

What Is Dog Life Expectancy After Heartworm Treatment?

Dog life expectancy after heartworm treatment depends on a variety of factors, including the dog’s age and general health prior to infection, the severity of the infestation, the type of heartworm treatment used, and how the treatment is administered. Additionally, lifestyle and diet choices can affect a dog’s life expectancy after heartworm treatment. Generally, the treatment of heartworm is considered successful if the dog survives for at least two years after treatment.

What Is Dog Life Expectancy After Heartworm Treatment?Dog Life Expectancy After Heartworm Treatment

Dog life expectancy after heartworm treatment will depend on the severity of the initial diagnosis and the overall health of the dog prior to treatment. Generally, most dogs can expect to live a normal lifespan after successful heartworm treatment, but there is the potential for complications. For example, dogs with severe heartworm infestation can develop fluid in their lungs, which can lead to respiratory problems, or there can be permanent damage to the heart and associated blood vessels. There may also be the risk of developing secondary infections due to weakened immunity because of the heartworm. Therefore, it is important to talk to your vet about the potential risks and develop a plan to ensure the best outcome for your pet.

What Percentage of Dogs Survive Heartworm?

The percentage of dogs that survive heartworm depends on the individual case. In general, the longer a dog has been living with the disease, the lower the chances of survival are. According to a study conducted in 2013, the overall survival rate for dogs with heartworm was estimated to be 80-85% with treatment. When left untreated, heartworm can be fatal.

How Long Can a Dog Live With Heartworms Without Treatment?

Without treatment, heartworms can live for up to five to seven years inside a dog’s heart. Without treatment, the worms can cause serious damage to the organs of the dog. This damage can eventually lead to congestive heart failure, which can shorten the lifespan of the dog. Additionally, dogs that are infected with heartworms may have weaker immune systems, which can lead to other illnesses and infections that can be fatal. It is best to treat an infected dog as soon as possible to avoid any of these serious complications.

Dog Died After Heartworm Treatment

There are several possible explanations as to why a dog may die after heartworm treatment. It is important to note that heartworm disease is a serious and potentially fatal condition, and treatment should always be carried out by a skilled veterinarian to minimize the risks associated with the disease.

One possible reason a dog may die after heartworm treatment is if the dog already has a weakened immune system. In this case, the treatment may have affected the dog more severely than a healthy dog, resulting in death.

Another possible reason could be related to the chemical agents used in the heartworm treatment. These agents can be highly toxic to dogs, and the dosage may not have been carefully monitored, leading to an overdose.

Finally, the dog may have developed an adverse reaction to the treatment. This kind of reaction is very rare, but if it occurs, it can be life-threatening. If you suspect that your dog has developed an adverse reaction to heartworm treatment, you should seek help from a qualified veterinarian immediately.

What Causes Heartworms?dog 3

Heartworms are caused by mosquitoes carrying and transmitting the parasite Dirofilaria immitis. When a mosquito bites an animal and carries this parasite, the animal can become infected with the heartworm larvae. Once those larvae are in the animal’s bloodstream, they can migrate to the animal’s heart and lungs, developing into adult heartworms.

How Does Heartworm Spread in Dogs?

Heartworm is spread from dog to dog by mosquitoes. When a mosquito bites an infected dog, it takes in microscopic heartworm larvae. The larvae then develop into infective larvae within the mosquito and can be passed to another dog when the mosquito bites again. Heartworm disease can also be passed between dogs when they come into direct contact with infected fluids, such as in the case of mating.

How Long Can a Dog Live with Heartworms?

Heartworm disease is one of the most serious diseases that can affect dogs, and it is caused by parasitic worms that live in a dog’s arteries. If left untreated, heartworms can significantly shorten a dog’s lifespan, and in some cases, the parasites can even cause death.

The length of time that a dog can survive with heartworms will depend on a variety of factors, including the type and number of heartworms present, the strain of heartworm present, and the overall health of the dog. In general, however, untreated heartworm infections usually lead to death within 1-2 years.

The best way to prevent heartworm disease in dogs is to give them regular preventative medications. These medications kill the heartworm larvae before they can mature into an adult parasite, thus preventing infection. Once a dog is infected with heartworms, the only reliable way to get rid of the parasites is to give the dog a course of heartworm treatment, which usually consists of several medications administered over the course of several weeks.

During this period, the dog may need to be kept in a quiet and stress-free environment in order to encourage the worms to die. Antibiotics may be given to help the dog’s immune system, and supportive care such as proper nutrition and rest will be necessary.

In most cases, a dog undergoing heartworm treatment will be closely monitored by a veterinarian to ensure that the treatment is working and that the dog is otherwise healthy. Once the treatment is complete, the dog should make a full recovery and it is possible for it to live a normal life span. However, if the treatment is not effective or the heartworms are not removed, the dog may experience long-term complications or die prematurely.

How Will Heartworm Treatment Affect My Dog?D 3

Heartworm treatment can have many different effects on your dog, depending on the severity of the infection. Often, the treatment will involve a series of injections and/or oral medications. Common side effects of heartworm treatment may include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, loss of appetite, sudden weight loss, changes in behavior, and, in rare cases, a form of inflammation known as granulomatous inflammation. Your vet will be able to provide the best advice on how to care for your pet during the treatment process.

SEE ALSO: Dog Eye Ulcer: Causes And Treatment

Dog Behavior After Heartworm Treatment

After a dog has completed treatment for heartworm, he may exhibit a brief period of odd behavior. During the first few days after the final treatment, the dog may be tired from the medications. Some dogs may show signs of anxiety, restlessness, or irritability. This is normal as the dog adjusts to the changes in his system. As his body begins to clear the medication, his behavior should normalize over the course of several weeks.

Long-Term Effects of Heartworm in Dogs After Treatment

Long-term effects of heartworm in dogs after treatment vary based on the stage of infestation and severity of damage to a canine’s heart and lungs.

In mild cases, animals can usually make a full recovery in approximately six months, provided the animal is monitored regularly and receives all necessary follow-up care.  But in more severe cases, long-term damage to the heart and lungs can occur with even severe long-term side effects ranging from coughing and difficulty breathing to abdominal fluid accumulation and cardiac failure.

In some cases, a dog’s health may never return to normal, even after successful treatment. However, with adequate follow-up care, most dogs can live healthy, normal lives with minimal symptoms.  Regular veterinary check-ups are important to catch any potential long-term complications that may occur.

Heartworm Disease Treatments for Dogsdog 6

  1. A course of oral macrocyclic lactone: This is a type of medication that is typically administered in pills for dogs. It generally involves a series of injections or tablets that have to be given over a certain period of time. This treatment is meant to kill the adult heartworm parasites in your dog’s body.
  2. Surgery: Surgery is an option if your dog’s heartworm infestation is severe. During the procedure, the vet must remove any adult heartworms and debris from the left side of the heart. This can be an invasive procedure, so be sure to discuss all the potential risks and benefits with your vet.
  3. Ivermectin: Ivermectin is one of the most effective means of treating heartworm. It is an antiparasitic agent that kills adult heartworms, larvae, and microfilariae. It is administered in a series of pills given once a month, supplemented by monthly blood work to track heartworm levels.
  4. Diet Changes: Diet changes may be necessary to help your dog clear the parasites from the body. This may involve switching your dog to an appropriate heartworm prevention diet or one specifically targeted towards dogs with heartworm disease.

Dog Heartworm Medicine

Common medications used to prevent heartworm infection include ivermectin, milbemycin oxime, moxidectin, and selamectin. You may also need to give your pet a heartworm test every 6 or 12 months in order to catch any infections early and ensure their heartworm prevention regimen is effective.

How to Treat Heartworm in Dogs at Home

  • Obtain a prescription of melarsomine (Heartgard Plus) from your veterinarian to kill the adult heartworms in your dog. Follow all instructions provided by your veterinarian when administering this medication, as it is essential for it to be effective.
  • Feed your dog either a commercial heartworm diet or a homemade diet to reduce the risk of further complications due to heartworms. Include fresh vegetables, lean proteins, and complex carbohydrates such as oats, brown rice, and sweet potatoes in the diet.
  • Give your dog heartworm preventive medication according to the instructions provided by your vet. This will help to prevent future infections.
  • Provide your dog with a stress-free environment and ensure that it gets plenty of fresh air and exercise.
  • Make changes to your dog’s lifestyle to ensure that it stays healthy. Avoid having your dog around stagnant water where mosquitoes breed, and keep your yard free of stagnant water pools or containers.

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Q. Do dogs go back to normal after heartworm treatment?

A. Yes, most dogs who receive heartworm treatment can make a full recovery following suitable care and medication.

Q. How long do dogs live if they have heartworms?

A. Dogs with heartworms can live for several months, depending on the severity of the infection, but ultimately the condition will cause death if untreated.

Q. How long does a dog need after heartworm treatment?

A. It usually takes several weeks to several months for a dog to completely recover after heartworm treatment.

Q. Can my dog jump on the couch after heartworm treatment?

A. No, your dog should not jump on the couch after heartworm treatment as it can cause undue stress to the heart and lungs which can hinder recovery.


The life expectancy of a dog who is fully treated for heartworm disease can be affected by a variety of factors. While overall prognosis can be highly variable, typically long-term heartworm treatment results in an excellent prognosis in most cases. In some cases, the affected dog may have a slightly shorter lifespan due to the underlying heartworm infection. With proper care, however, most dogs treated for heartworm disease can live a long and healthy life with no residual health problems.

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