Giving heartworm preventative to dogs or cats that are already infected with adult heartworms can be harmful and even fatal to the animal. A blood test before starting any medication will tell your veterinarian if your pet is already infected. Heartworm preventatives kill off heartworm larvae-the medicine does not kill adult heartworms. An owner might think his cat or dog is fine if the pet is on a heartworm preventative, but if the pet was already heartworm-positive, the disease is only worsening and the heartworm preventative is not helping.
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