Snelgrove Vet Services Spring Newsletter


Fleas, Ticks, Mosquitoes. OUCH!

What does warm weather, damp corners and dark shadows add up to? You guessed it. Fleas, ticks and mosquitoes. Lucky us.

Unfortunately for our pets, both ticks and mosquitoes can carry potentially fatal diseases that can be passed on. Ticks for example, can carry Lyme disease and mosquitoes can carry heartworms.

So, how do we deal with these insects?  That’s where we come in.

There are some wonderful products available for our pets to make sure that these diseases aren’t transferred from said insect to your pet. We have both chewable and topical medications to help control insects on your pet. The topicals we carry produce what is called a ‘Hot-foot’ effect. When a tick, flea or mosquito touches your pet’s skin it causes a burning sensation on the bottom of the insect’s feet causing them to hop off of your pet and not even have a chance to feed. This medication is then distributed through their body and kills them.

The chewables work by traveling through your pets blood stream and when an insect feeds, it is automatically ingesting this medication causing them to die. Both products work exceptionally well at controlling fleas and ticks. With regards to heartworm, transferred by mosquitoes, you do need a different medication.

Blood testing is strongly encouraged yearly for tick-borne diseases and mandatory for heartworm prevention. Many tick-borne diseases can be treated with a short course of antibiotics if detected early. Commonly symptoms of tick-borne diseases appear vague and often go unnoticed for long periods of time. Often many pet owners don’t know their dog is suffering from a debilitating tick disease until it is too late.

Symptoms of progressive tick-borne diseases can include but are not limited to;

  • joint pain and inflammation
  • low-grade persistent fever
  • swelling at bite site
  • loss of appetite
  • spontaneous and shifting lameness
  • reluctant to move
  • fatigue
  • lethargy
  • weight loss, may or may not, include muscle wasting
  • depression
  • neck pain
  • neurological signs
  • bruising on gums or belly
  • nosebleed
  • discharge from eyes
  • vomiting
  • generalized weakness

Where do ticks live?

Ticks are typically found in forested areas and any overgrown areas including our own backyards. They don’t typically like sunny short-grassed areas but that’s not to say they can’t be there.

Keep your lawn and outdoor play areas safe. Keep shrubs and grass trimmed. Clean up any leaves or debris, especially underneath bushes. Limit shrubs and plants from areas your children and/or pets frequent. i.e. swing-sets, outdoor dining areas, etc. Keep areas around sheds and other buildings free of debris especially in shady areas.

For more information and a map of tick disease in our area visit

Many people already know that fleas can live in our households, but did you know, so can the brown dog tick? These ticks will live and reproduce in our houses just like fleas and typically need an exterminator to get rid of. Topical preventives and checking your pets skin will help prevent these pesky creatures from moving into your home. We have also seen an increase of Deer Ticks in the Brampton area. These ticks are the carriers of Lyme disease.

Walk-in blood testing is available for your pets that do not need to see a veterinarian for any other reason.


May 1st – May 31st

Mon. 9:00-12:00 2:00-8:00

Tues. 9:00-12:00 2:00-7:00

Wed. 9:00-12:00 2:00-8:00

Thurs. 9:00-12:00 2:00-7:00

Fri. 9:00-12:00 2:00-7:00

Please note: Walk-Ins are NOT available during 12:00-2:00 pm nor on Saturdays



Cats can also be tested and placed on preventative. Due to the life-cycle of Feline Heartworm, many cats may have the parasite without showing any symptoms. Consider treating any cats that go outdoors, travel to the USA and/or southern Ontario or that have a chronic cough or wheeze.


If you notice a tick on yourself, a family member or pet, please use extreme caution when removing it or ask a professional to remove it for you. Many times the head can be left in the skin if not done properly.

Here are some of the products that we carry;

























One bite, it’s all it takes!

Ticks and mosquitoes

Spring has typically always been the time of year that we talk to our clients about the importance of putting their pets on a heartworm prevention. One bite from an infected mosquito is all it takes to transmit these tiny, microscopic parasites that can grow up to 12 inches long!

Now the issue is, we know that not only do mosquitoes transmit heartworm to pets, but, we also have ticks in Brampton. They can transmit Lyme disease, Erlichiosis [ur-lik-ee-oh-sis] , Anaplasmosis [an-uh-plaz-moh-sis] and Babesiosis [bab-bee-z-oh-sis].

So, the big question is, what can we do about it?

Well, lets face facts, these little bugs are not going away.

So, how do we prevent our pet from getting these diseases/parasites?

Testing, due diligence and prevention. Testing can tell us if your pet has already been exposed. We can then, if necessary, start appropriate treatment regiments. Hopefully prior to any permanent damage being done. Due diligence, check your pet head to tail for any small lumps which may be an attached tick. Prevention, there are many products available that help prevent our pets from getting bitten by these dangerous bugs. Just give your veterinarian a call and they can go over all options with you.

Remember to also keep yourself safe. Although mosquitoes don’t infect humans with heartworm, ticks can transmit all of these diseases to us as well. Check yourself for ticks as well. If you suspect you have been bitten by a tick or see a tick attached to yourself, contact your health care provider immediately.

For more information, click on the links below;


As always, thanks for reading:)

The staff at Snelgrove Veterinary Services





Fox Lungworm – Should we be worried?

Recently it has come to our attention that the fox lungworm (Crenosoma vulpis) seems to have spread to Ontario. Some Atlantic provinces have always been familiar with this parasite but only recently has it started being talked about here. Since November 2014 there have been 13 confirmed cases in Ontario with one being in Brampton.

Dogs get fox lungworm by eating infected snails and slugs.

Signs of fox lungworm include chronic cough, exercise intolerance, weight loss and difficulty breathing.

Fortunately for us, Advantage Multi kills fox lungworm. So, if you already have your dog on this as a monthly preventive for heartworm, then you have nothing to worry about.

Bayer Animal Health is currently conducting a study on the prevalence of fox lungworm in Ontario. If your dog has been coughing for 1-2 weeks, does not have a fever and has not been dewormed with any product in the last 60 days, they will perform a Baermann test to see if your pet has fox lungworm.

Contact your veterinarian to see if this applies to your pet and how to submit a sample.

Fox Lungworm





Photo courtesy of Bayer Animal Health 2015.

Crenosoma vulpis is not considered a disease risk to people

You can read more about this at the University of Guelph’s Worms & Germs Blog

Protecting Our Feline Friends!

Spring and summer time are often synonymous with dogs and heartworm prevention. But what about our feline friends – did you know that they can be affected by internal and external parasites as well? 

This time of year, worms and other parasites are more easily transmittable and cats are just as susceptible as dogs

Whether your cat is strictly indoors, or if they spend some time outside as well, there are many ways that they can contract these pesky little parasites, which can wreak havoc on their skin, intestinal tract and more. Some are even transmittable to humans!

The most common parasites that we deal with here at Snelgrove Vet Services are:


Fleas are probably the most easily identifiable parasite that you can find on your cat. If your cat goes outside, they can come into contact with fleas if they visit an area where another animal with fleas has been. If your cat stays indoors, fleas can also make their way inside by hitching a ride on the back of another pet and then jumping onto yours. In any case, fleas are not something that most people enjoy dealing with, as treatment involves both your animals and your home. Luckily, only animals can be hosts to fleas, not humans.

Ear Mites

Ear mites are much harder to spot, although not impossible, since they are so tiny. They typically live within the ear canal, but can also be found on the surface of the skin. They present as a dark, crusty discharge seen in or around the ear, with your cat shaking its head and scratching excessively at the affected area. Ear mites can be passed through direct contact, although again, they cannot live on humans, only animals.


Tapeworms are a type of internal parasite that are ingested and then attach themselves to the wall of the small intestine of your cat. Once the tapeworm becomes an adult, they can also travel to the stomach. Segments of the tapeworm can sometimes break off and be spotted in the stool (they look like bits of white rice), or if the infestation is large enough, your cat may vomit them up. Most often, your cat will become infected with tapeworms from eating mice or being bitten by fleas. These nasty little creatures can also be transmitted to humans. Yuck!


Roundworms are another type of internal parasite. While they can infect your cat at any age, they are most harmful to kittens and senior cats. Clinical signs include a distended abdomen, vomiting and/or diarrhea, as well as a decreased appetite. Again, this is a type of worm that is transmitted through ingestion – either from eating a smaller host (like a mouse or bird), picking it up off of the ground after walking through an area where infected stool has been, or even through the milk from the kitten’s mother. Roundworms also pose a risk to humans, especially young children.

Luckily, we have an arsenal of tablets and topical medications in our pharmacy that can combat these unwanted visitors!

Of course, prevention is always preferred to treatment

The doctors here at Snelgrove Vet recommend a monthly dose of either a tablet dewormer called Milbemax and/or a liquid medication applied directly to the skin called Advantage Multi. Contact our office today to learn more or if you suspect that your feline friend may be affected by parasites. We are always here to help!

For additional information on these, and other, parasites, visit the Pet Health section on our website – it has loads of great articles, all written by veterinary professionals.

Heartworm and your pet

It’s that time of year again. Mosquitoes are starting to hatch and soon will be maturing and starting to bite. Some mosquitoes carry the deadly heartworm and can pass it on to your pet when they to feed. Heartworm is a very easy parasite to prevent but extremely risky to treat.

A once-monthly chewable treat or  topical liquid started on June 1st until November 1st will prevent heartworm from developing in your pet’s bloodstream. This month, Snelgrove Veterinary Services, offers walk-in heartworm testing for those pets needing a blood test.

walk-in hw










Don’t know if your pet needs a blood test or want more information about heartworm, just click on this link :

Snelgrove Vet Services Heartworm information

Thanks for reading 🙂


Heartworm 2014 from your friends at Snelgrove Vet in Brampton


Mosquito season is fast approaching and although it doesn’t seem like the weather is co-operating, mosquitoes are coming out on a daily basis. All dogs should start their heartworm prvention on June 1st and carry through to November 1st or February 1st depending on the product that you use.

The 3 products we typically recommend at Snelgrove Veterinary Services are as follows:

Heartgard – covers heartworm, roundworms and hookworms.

Trifexis – covers heartworm, roundworms, hookworms and adult fleas.

Advatage Multi – covers heartworm, roundworms, hookworms, fleas, mange and ear mites.

Due to a new strain of heartworm that has been detected in the U.S. called MP3, Heartgard and Trifexis must be used for 9 months to completely protect your pet. Advantage Multi can be used safely for 6 months. This only applies to animals staying in our general vicinity or North of Brampton. Animals that travel to southern Ontario or to the U.S.A should use a preventive for the entire year.

Prior to putting your dog on a heartworm prevention, it is imperative to test your pet for heartworm disease. This requires a simple blood draw by your veterinarian. Many products may not be safe to be given to heartworm positive dogs.

Feel free to ask us what prevention is best for your pet.