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Hello all-

I don't much experience with dogs, but my girlfriend has a great little guy that I have grown attached to since I have gotten to know him. Her family is from FL (though we live in NYC right now) and seems to me that she was raised to be pretty "lax" as far as dog care goes.

Well I am not the same way at all, and have recently taken an interest in raising the little guy (and the puppy we just adopted) so he can be a healthy, happy dog.

Anyway, I really never knew much about heartworms, but it recently came to my attention that this dog is not on ANY preventative meds. I have scheduled a physical for him in the coming weeks, so I will definitely get him tested and get a scrip for prevention medicine.

The thing is we are leaving for New Hampshire for a 5 day vacation. I actually didn't realize they were prescription only; I had intended on going to a pet store to get him some before we left.

So I'm wondering if there's anything I can do besides just cross my fingers and hope for the best. Pretty ticked that this dog hasn't been better taken care of, but at this point I am thinking there is nothing I can do. I know there is no over the counter alternative, but if there is anything at all I can do to minimize the risk even slightly, I would really be relieved to hear it. Thanks in advance!

P.S. Our puppy has heartworm meds to take but she is 30 pounds so she has them for dogs from 26-50lbs. He is only 12lbs. I am assuming it would be unsafe/irresponsible to break up one of her pills to give to him, because a) he hasn't been tested since last year according to her and b) i wouldn't want to give him too high of a dosage.
 

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Never give a dog any type of medicine unless advise by a vet. The dog need to be checked out and tested for heartworms before getting the meds, I believe.
 

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Never give a dog any type of medicine unless advise by a vet. The dog need to be checked out and tested for heartworms before getting the meds, I believe.
Yes this is what my research has led me to believe as well. Seeing as I can't get him to our vet before we leave, I guess I just have to hope for the best? Ugh, really not the thing I want to spend my vacation worrying about.
 

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Heartworm is spread through mosquitoes so a "natural" non-toxic bug repellent would at least help a little. Keeping the dog inside when mosquitoes are at their most active, at dusk and dawn and around water would also be helpful.
 

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How long has he lived in NYC? Did he ever live in FL? How old is he? If he's always lived in NYC, the chances of him having heartworm is fairly slim. If he ever lived in FL and wasn't on preventive. . .well, not so good. Another few days won't make much difference one way or the other, so try not to worry!
 

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If you break up a HW preventative, you're likely giving nothing to at least one of the dogs. There is small dosage of ivermectin in each pill.

If you are that worried, you could always call around to different vets and see if you can't get in quickly for just a HW test. He's been off preventative this long that in the grand scheme of things the gamble you're taking isn't that much larger. Avoid heavily mosquito infested areas, hope for the best when he tests.
 

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IMO, 5 days isn't going to make much difference. Just get him in for an appointment as soon as you can when you get back. Don't worry about it on your vacation, by this point it is what it is and you'll either have to treat him for heartworms or put him on preventative. There isn't much to be done until then.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
He was tested last year around this time apparently and was negative. He has been in NYC for a couple of years now, but when he was in FL he was on preventative meds.

Thanks everybody! Definitely helped put my mind at ease.
 

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I personally would get him into the vets now but if you can't, five days won't make a difference. OT: where in my fine state are you vacationing? It's beautiful here, tho the weekend isn't looking so great, weather wise.
 
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