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Heartworm preventatives . . . Which is the best?

Discussion in 'Doberman Talk and Discussions' started by My2Dobies, Jan 16, 2019.

  1. My2Dobies

    My2Dobies Hot Topics Subscriber

    Hey gang!

    I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences with heart worm preventatives as well as tick / flea preventatives. I searched some older posts about this topic, but they seemed to spin off in a more holistic approach. What I did learn is that I want to do some more research into the topic. But what I need right now is some solid info on more “traditional” products, especially from those of you fellow southerners.

    We live in north central Texas, where we deal with “city” mosquitos, and have a weekend place in southeastern Oklahoma on a river with woods and adjacent ponds and marshy areas, where mosquitos, ticks and sometimes fleas thrive. Lexi is now 4 1/2 months old and just finished her last round of shots, so in a couple of weeks, we will again be spending our weekends in OK. With my previous girls, I used Heartguard (chewable) monthly and topical flea/tick stuff (Pet Armour - I think). My vet gave me a sample of Advantage Multi, which is a topical that covers heart worms, fleas and ticks. But . . . I just don’t like the topical stuff, especially with lots of little grandkids running around.

    I saw at one point where some on here were happy with Sentinel, which appears to be a chewable that covers all three. Can those of you who use these types of products school me on what y’all use, and the pros and cons?
  2. jazzies mum

    jazzies mum Notable member

    I have used Nexgard Spectra which prevents heartworm, kills fleas, controls ticks, and treats roundworms, hookworms and whipworms. It's a monthly treatment in chewable form. I am in Australia so am assuming that this would be available there.

    There were no ill effects, but Jazz did not think this was "tasty" so I had to break it up and give as I would tablets. No big drama there. My only concern is that it is a lot of chemicals, and apart from the heartworm preventative not all these chemicals are needed year round. Now I give Jazz seperate heartworm treatment and only give her the Nexgard when all the chemicals are actually needed. When worming is due, and when fleas and ticks are about.

    Not sure I would have loaded her up with this when she was 4 1/2 months old though, but that is just my feeling on it. There's nothing on the packaging about the age you can start it.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. My2Girls

    My2Girls Notable member


    My pup came home from the breeder on Sentinel - never had a problem but I don’t think it covers ticks so we switched to HeartGuard and Frontline which is what we’ve used for our other dogs. I’m not a big fan of the all-in-one ingestable type products but some on here use them.

    We have 2 kids and they know that the first 2 days after applying Frontline they are not to touch the dogs’ backs. Of course they need constant reminders and they’ve had to wash their hands plenty of times when they forget. But it is what it is and the products work for us with no issues with the dogs.
    • Like Like x 1
  4. C908

    C908 Notable member

    I have also been researching and giving thought to want I want to use on Preacher. After being told by two vets that Pet Armour and other generic brands were crap he was put on Nexgard. He hated the taste, after 2 months and seeing a recent FDA Bulletin I stopped the Nexgard. I returned the unused portion with a copy of the bulletin to the manufacturer for a refund. After talking to multiple satisfied dog owners using soresto collars I decided to go that route. As for heartworm preventative in the past we have used Heartgard , several vets have told us they prefer Sentinal Spectrum because it covers several types of worms that Heartgard doesn't.We had one vet that said in addition to Sentinal he likes Advantage Multi. We have taken Preacher off the Heartgard for the winter, I think I will probably start him on Sentinal Spectrum in the spring after I have him tested.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2019
  5. Ingrid H

    Ingrid H Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    I actually don't use a preventative for heartworm but I live in a freezing cold rural area that has few dogs per square mile and not a lot of mosquitoes either. Mosquitoes have a fairly short life and a limited range of flight, so I think the risk is minimal. Hans just passed his 9th annual heartworm test a couple of hours ago. I don't use flea or tick preventatives on him either. He's never had fleas, but we haven't owned a cat (flea magnet) since having Hans. There is the occasional tick, but I keep him vaccinated against Lyme.
  6. Ingrid H

    Ingrid H Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Do you have the tick borne Lyme disease in Australia? Lyme disease is named after a town in the state of Connecticut here in the USA where the disease is thought to have originated.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  7. jazzies mum

    jazzies mum Notable member

    We don't officially have Lyme disease here in Australia, but I have seen a documentary that claimed that there have been some cases. People do travel overseas and it makes sense that it will appear here at some time. As far as I know there hasn't been any pets infected with Lyme. Our biggest tick borne hazard is the paralysis tick, that you apparently don't have, luckily. It isn't a disease exactly but the toxins injected by a particular type of tick is frequently fatal to pets and makes humans pretty sick too. Keeping the ticks off the animal is the only good solution, and preventatives and frequent tick checks are the only way to go. By the time there are symptoms it is often too late!
    • Wow x 2
  8. Ddski5

    Ddski5 Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Went to vet yesterday and was scolded for skipping HW meds during winter. They are the same folks that were with Ragnar when he was critical from the last obstruction, so they are pretty attached to him. I get their reasoning of our weather down here not stay consistently cold and I should do it year around.

    I just have a hard time getting it out of my head about all those toxins. Never gave my last lab HW meds, he lived to be 15 and never did not get HW.

    Anyways, Ragnar tested negative. This Saturday it’s supposed to get down to 30dg, and I will start back with Advantage Multi afterwards. Ragnar never had any previous issues with it, does get kinda sluggish day of application though. I do warn the family not to handle him for a while.
  9. C908

    C908 Notable member

    This has been the same thing I have been dealing with. I hate the thought of putting poison in Preacher. I considered Wondercide but the dermatologist talked against it. He said the natural products just don't have enough stuff to do the job. This same doctor has told me to take Preacher off Heartgard until spring. He wants to get the chemicals out of his system. I have my regular vets telling me to keep him on the preventative. One vet says to use Sentinel Spectrum while the other vet says to use Advantage Multi. After going back and forth on this I think I will leave him off his preventative until spring and then have him retested.At this point I'm leaning towards Sentinel Spectrum because I really don't want the topical. I also recently took him off Nexgard flea and tick switching to a Soresto collar. So far he has had no skin irritation or negative reaction from the Soresto collar.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Kaiser2016

    Kaiser2016 Active Member

    Wow, this was Alex? The last time this topic came up and I saw that HW risk map, I wasn't so sure you should skip HW meds, but this is interesting information especially since you mentioned him being an outside dog too - greater exposure risk, yet never infected despite the ideal weather conditions for mosquitos.

    Regarding vets giving you a scolding, mine does too despite the risk of HW here being extremely low. Mine even has giant HW 'spaghetti' posters in all his exam rooms for maximum fear factor :rolleyes:
  11. Ingrid H

    Ingrid H Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    My family dog (sort of a collie spaniel mix) growing up got heartworm, but he was an outdoor dog in a small city. His vet had an infested heart in a jar to illustrate an advanced case of heartworm. He lived to be 19 years old, but it is sad that he did get heartworm.
    • Wow x 3
  12. JanS

    JanS DCF Owner Administrative Staff Moderator Hot Topics Subscriber

    We use Heartgard for mosquitoes and Nexgard chewables for ticks (and fleas, even though we don't have fleas around here). We live in a bitter cold climate too so we only give them for about 4 or 5 months out of the year, depending on the weather.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Ddski5

    Ddski5 Hot Topics Subscriber $ Forum Donor $

    Yes, it was Alex. He was an outside dog. Never gave him any meds except for when he got a case of the fleas. Don’t know where they came from, the squirrels or possibly a coon he treed one night. Within the next week he must have had 200 fleas on him. Gave him one Comfortis tablet and could not believe my eyes. Within 10 mins, you could see the little black fleas in his yellow hair. They were scurrying, flicking and jumping off of him.

    Don’t get me wrong, by far am I not advocating not using HW prevention. I just find it interesting that Alex lived to 15 without meds in the Deep South of mosquito central. Now granted, I did not have an necropsy and he could have been full but I choose not to think that of stuff like that.
    • Wow x 1
  14. Lizbeli

    Lizbeli Hot Topics Subscriber

    Count me as another person trying to avoid harsh chemicals. I swear Advantage contributed to my last dog's seizures.

    Getting a new puppy and I plan to use Wondercide in the summer. But I dont know if I should skip heartworm meds in the winter or just skip them all together and go for testing every season. I live in Rhode Island.

    Has anyone ever heard/tried of this..?

    Attached Files:

    • Like Like x 1
  15. My2Dobies

    My2Dobies Hot Topics Subscriber

    I never used HW preventatives with my first dobie, Shandie, either, and we lived in the country, in town and a city. She lived to be 13. With my last two, I used Heartgard exclusively; they never seemed to have any problems from it. But, even though I gave it to them monthly, Lace tested HW positive the last year of her life. (So I guess it’s like the pill: 99.9% effective? Idk, but the vet said sometimes dogs get them anyway.). Here in town, the mosquitoes are full on in spring through late fall. But out at the river, they are pretty much year-round and ferocious (despite the bats best-efforts). We did use the Spartan Mosquito Eradicator this past year and it made a huge difference in the amount that we had to deal with. Because of all the wildlife, there are ticks: those teeny-tiny little ones that you can’t really see. And our camper was infested with fleas on one trip out there, although luckily that time we hadn’t brought the dogs, so they were contained there. From what I’m seeing, Sentinel Spectrum doesn’t control ticks. So I guess I’ll need a two-pronged approach anyway.

    My mom swears by spraying Listerine - the original yellow kind - on her dog for ticks and fleas (although she’s not out in wildernesses with him). Anybody else ever heard about or tried that?
    • Like Like x 1
  16. My2Dobies

    My2Dobies Hot Topics Subscriber

    I think you’re right about it not covering ticks. I’m not sure where I got that idea, but in looking online I’m only seeing it cover HW and fleas . . .
    • Like Like x 1
  17. My2Dobies

    My2Dobies Hot Topics Subscriber

    @C908 , the Soresto collar looks promising. Glad it’s working out for you so far. I’m thinking I’ll give that a try for ticks and fleas . . .
  18. JanS

    JanS DCF Owner Administrative Staff Moderator Hot Topics Subscriber

    I refuse to use harsh chemicals too and when I have a bad reaction to something, the dogs aren't going to get it either.
    I haven't heard of it but it looks interesting. If you try it keep us posted on how it works.
  19. Dawg 1419

    Dawg 1419 Hot Topics Subscriber

    We tried the soresto collars and didn’t work on our small dogs.
  20. My2Dobies

    My2Dobies Hot Topics Subscriber

    Didn’t control fleas? Ticks? Or had a reaction to it?

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