(Rx) - indicates only available by prescription
Heartgard chewable is given once a month for the prevention of heartworm disease in dogs and cats. It is recommended by the American Heartworm Society that heartworm prevention be used year round. Heartgard may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this guide.Heartgard Chewable is a medication available for dogs as beef flavored chewable tablets, and for cats as a palatable meaty flavored chewable tablet.
The usual dose of Heartgard Chewable for dogs up to 25 pounds is 68mcg (blue box), for dogs 26-50 pounds is 136mcg (green box) and for dogs 51-100 pounds is 272mcg (brown box). The usual dose of Heartgard for cats 5 pounds or less is 55mcg (red box) and for cats 6 to 15 pounds is 165mcg (purple box). The chewable tablets must be chewed and should not be swallowed whole. For dogs that normally swallow whole, the chewable tablets can be broken into pieces. For cats, the pieces can be broken and crumbled into food or fed directly to the cat. If you miss a dose give the missed dose as soon as you remember. Do not give a double dose of the medication. Give Heartgard exactly as directed by the veterinarian. If you do not understand the directions ask the pharmacist or veterinarian to explain them to you. Heartgard chewable tablets must be chewed. They should not be swallowed whole.
Tell your veterinarian if your pet has ever had an allergic reaction to Heartgard, ivermectin, or to beef. Use with caution in collies. Heartworm testing should be performed prior to the start of prevention therapy. If the animal is off Heartgardchewable for 6 months or less, start the medication and test after 6 months since microfilaria, that take 6 months to mature, will result in a positive test result. Store Heartgard chewable at room temperature. Do not remove the chew from its wrapper until ready to give the medicine. Keep this medication away from children and pets. If you overdose your pet seek emergency veterinary medical treatment. Symptoms of overdose may include vomiting, diarrhea and incoordination in dogs. In cats symptoms of overdose may include disorientation, tremors, incoordination, and blindness. Because humans can contract hookworm from animals, it is important to maintain good personal hygiene. It is also important to eliminate fleas on the pet and in the household and to not feed the pet rodents or uncooked meat or fish. To prevent reinfection, daily cleanup of stools is recommended.
Side effects of Heartgard are rare at the recommended heartworm prevention dose. Higher doses in dogs may cause tremors, dilated pupils, and loss of body weight and death. Side effects in cats include agitation, loss of appetite, staggering, dilated pupils, tremors, blindness and disorientation.