Risk of exotic diseases in travelling and imported pets.


Current requirements for pets to travel to the UK under PETS requires protection against rabies and a tapeworm (echinococcus multilocularis), however these are not the only diseases of concern our travelling pets can be exposed to. Last month we diagnosed heartworm in a dog imported from the Caribbean, however this could have been found in a pet travelling from Southern Europe. Heartworm larvae are transmitted by mosquitos, after migration to the heart adult worms mature. Heavy heartworm burdens can be life threatening by causing heart failure. Protecting your dog from heartworm involves monthly worming and additional use of mosquito repellent is also recommended. Exposure to mosquitos can also be minimised by avoiding taking your dog out during peak feeding time e.g. dawn, dusk and at night. Please ask one of our vets advice about protecting your pet against heartworm and other exotic diseases before you travel.

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