At All Creatures Small we employ the SNAP4Dx Plus Heartworm Test, which tests your dog for the presence of adult heartworms by detecting antigens (proteins present on the worm’s surface) in the dog’s blood. This test also detects antibodies to five other blood-borne bacteria which are spread primarily by ticks, including the organism that causes Lymes disease. The other four bacterial diseases screened for by this test include two species of Anaplasma, which causes fever and joint damage, and two species of Ehrilichia, which cause blood disorders (including anemia), kidney disease and joint damage. All of these diseases are screened for using only three drops of blood here at the clinic, with results available in minutes.
Cats also are susceptible to infection with heartworms, although it is much less common. Testing can be performed on cats showing symptoms at the clinic.