- The mosquito is the only known vector for transmitting heartworm.
- The average lifespan of heartworms in untreated pets is 5-7 years in dogs and 2-3 years in cats.
- Virtually 100% of dogs exposed to infective heartworm larvae become infected; in cats, this number drops to 61% to 90%.
- According to the Companion Animal Parasite Council, mature heartworms in cats average 21 cm (about 8.5") in length, while those in dogs average longer than 26 cm (10").
- Heartworm infection in cats exists everywhere heartworm in dogs exists.
- A study performed at North Carolina State University indicated that 25% of cats infected with heartworms were solely indoor cats.
- Heartworms may infect more than 30 species of animals including coyotes, foxes, wolves and other wild canids, domestic cats and wild felids, ferrets, marine mammals, and humans.
- Prevention is far more effective and less costly than treatment.
- More than 70 species of mosquitoes are capable of transmitting heartworm.
- Heartworms cannot be passed directly from one pet to another.
- Many dogs recover from heartworm disease with appropriate treatment, but heartworms cause severe disease and sometimes permanent damage.
- In cats, there is no effective treatment to kill heartworms.
- Animals will usually test positive for heartworm disease approximately 6-8 months after they were bitten by an infected mosquito.
- It is much more difficult to diagnose heartworm disease in cats than in dogs.
- Heartworms affect cats differently than dogs, but the disease they cause is equally as serious.