Heartworm Testing

Heartworms are very dangerous parasites for your pet. They are more commonly found in dogs, but sometimes they can infect cats as well. When your pet is bitten by a mosquito this can lead to future problems. Infected mosquitoes carry worm larvae and pass them on to your dog’s when they bite them. These worms mature inside your pet and grow up to a foot long, at which point they are able to affect blood vessels and cause blood clots. If your pet ever becomes infected with heartworms, our team is here to provide treatment, support and prevent it in the future.

What are signs that my pet has heartworms?

The best way to know if your pet has heartworms is to have them assessed by a veterinarian. The signs that you may notice can range from mild to severe. These signs rarely show until the infection is advanced which is why regular testing is key. Telltale signs to look for include:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lack of energy
  • Sudden weight loss
  • Fainting
  • Persistent cough
  • Unwillingness to exercise
  • Heart failure

    What happens when my pet is tested for heartworms?

    To detect heartworms in your pet, a sample of their blood is taken. In the lab we look for the presence of heartworm proteins. Heartworms affect the heart, kidney, chest and liver. Therefore, in addition to the blood test, X-rays and ultrasounds may be performed to check for organ functionality.

    If my pet is on heartworm medication, do they need regular testing?

    Yes, regular testing is still needed even if your pet is on medication. Missed or late doses of heartworm medication can make your pet susceptible to heartworms. To schedule testing for your dog, call us at 403.936.4571.

    How can I protect my pet from heartworm?

    To give your pet the best fighting chance against heartworms, they should begin preventative treatment early. Heartworm vaccinations should be administered every 6 to 12 months. The preventative treatments are in the form of topical liquids, injections and tablets. It is much easier to prevent heartworms than to treat it. This way, you can prevent multiple injections, possible hospitalization, possible side effects to treatment and more expenses. This is why prevention is extremely important.

  • Last updated: Sept 17, 2021

    Dear Clients,

    With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 25, 2020 the restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.

    1. WE CAN NOW SEE ALL CASES BY APPOINTMENT ONLY This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!


  • Continue our "closed waiting room" policy to protect our clients and staff. When you arrive, please remain outside the hospital and use your cell phone to call us. We will take a history of your pet's health and discuss any concerns. A staff member will then meet you outside to bring your pet into the hospital for an examination. The Veterinarian will call you to discuss the recommended treatment plan. After your appointment, a staff member will return your pet to you outside, and take care of any needed medications and payment.
  • Continue the use of credit cards as the preferred payment method.
  • Continue with curbside pickup of food and medication (unless you have used our online store and are having your order delivered directly to your home). To place an order through our online store, visit our website and click on "Online Store".
  • 3. OPERATING HOURS We are OPEN with the following hours:
    Monday to Friday: 8:30 am - 5:30 pm
    Saturday: 9:00 am - 2:00 pm
    Sunday: Closed

    4. NEW PET OWNERS Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

    - The team at Langdon Veterinary Clinic