Question about Heartworm positive dogs

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Question about Heartworm positive dogs

Postby redgigi on Fri Apr 08, 2011 10:25 pm


I am with the Australian Cattle Dog Rescue Association and up until recently, we generally did not accept HW positive dogs. We have changed this policy and decided to do so on a case by case basis, especially since it is so common in the south, and it is quite easy to get false negatives at shelters due to the incubation time.

My question: Since we now have a few HW positive dogs I am seeking help with transport for, I am curious about the general approach people take to this issue. Do pilots generally stay away form HW positive dogs? Are there greater risks I am unaware of? HW are tranferred through mosquito as I understand, is strictly blood born and not infectious like parvo.

I would appreciate any insight!
Thank you
Gina Rourke
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Re: Question about Heartworm positive dogs

Postby deeogee1 on Sun Apr 10, 2011 7:32 pm

Hi Gina,
You are correct that only an infected mosquito can transfer the heartworms (microfiliaria) to a dog through biting it. It is case by case if a dog should not fly~~and it's a question for the vet at the time he examines the dog for the health certificate. Generally, unless the HW is advanced & the dog has heart or lung issues it is safe to fly them in small planes like PNP pilots use. It is not the case with commercial flights where they are in cargo though because of the air pressure at the heights those planes travel. (This is what my vet told me when I consulted him).
It is up to the individual pilot & your vet, but HW+ dogs have been flown. I hope this addresses your concerns satisfactorily.


You can also read 2 other opinions when I asked the same question a year ago. viewtopic.php?f=3&t=6225&p=26912&hilit=heartworm#p26912
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Re: Question about Heartworm positive dogs

Postby robertam on Thu May 05, 2011 10:09 pm


I've coordinated PNP transports for several HW positive dogs. As Joanne noted, it is important to let the vet know that you would like to transport the dog via air, but via private planes; instead of on a commercial flight. Also it will depend on whether the heart worms have adversely affected the condition of the dog's heart. I sent a HW positive dog to PA not too long ago and turned out not to be HW positive!

Good luck!

Roberta Harding
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Kentucky Animal Relief Fund, Inc.
Lexington, KY
cell: 859-338-3470
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