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Does your dog have Lungworm?

There has been an increasing number of lungworm cases here in the UK. what do we need to look out for?

Over the last few years, we’ve seen an increasing number of lungworm cases here in the UK. It’s pretty serious – if untreated, lungworm could kill your dog. So it’s important that you recognise the symptoms of lungworm and know how to prevent your dog contracting it. 

What is lungworm? 

It’s a type of worm that matures in the vessels of the heart and lungs. 

What are the symptoms of lungworm? 

Lungworm can be tricky to diagnose, as some dogs don’t show any symptoms. Your dog may contract a moist cough – this is caused by the lungworm eggs hatching in their airway. This can cause breathing difficulties. 

Other symptoms to watch out for are lethargy, weight loss and a loss of appetite. In severe cases your dog may even get nosebleeds. Very occasionally, lungworm can affect the nervous system, leading to fits, paralysis and death. 

How can my dog catch lungworm? 

Lungworm is usually transmitted to dogs when they eat slugs or snails. The larvae then migrate through the intestinal wall and into the blood vessels, and from there to the heart and lungs. 


Can I prevent lungworm? 

When it comes to lungworm, prevention is always better. You can find out if you live in a known lungworm area here. 

There are two products that can help prevent lungworm. Advocate is a monthly spot on treatment, and will also protect your dog from fleas, worms and ticks. Milbemax is a monthly tablet that can also prevent roundworms, tapeworms and hookworms. 

If you have any questions about lungworm, speak to one of our vets online