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A New Way to Treat Heartworm in Dogs

I have created a new career for myself in retirement as an animal advocate. I write articles to create awareness of shelter pets.

Treating heartworm can be complicated. But it's possible!

Treating heartworm can be complicated. But it's possible!

New Creative Kennel Area for Heartworm Residents

The Manatee County Animal Services shelter in Palmetto, Florida, launched a new kennel area at the shelter to help dogs that are heartworm positive. Heartworm treatment is stressful for dogs, and it is not always possible to treat dogs that are residents of a noisy shelter.

The shelter management, along with dedicated volunteers, created a new kennel area to house dogs that are receiving treatment. This area is separated from the general population and is somewhat more peaceful for these dogs while they are receiving treatment and waiting for their forever homes.

The Heartworm Hotel was opened on February 17, 2017, and at the time of its opening, had 9 residents that were receiving treatment and waiting to be fostered or adopted. Volunteers have a separate area to walk these dogs. Potential pet parents are encouraged to visit these residents at the shelter's Heartworm Hotel to find a loving dog to foster or adopt.

New Volunteer Group Partners With Shelter to Provide Heartworm Treatment

A new volunteer group, Friends of Manatee County Animal Services, partnered with the shelter to provide funds and other medical services for treating heartworms. This volunteer group was formed in December of 2016 and replaced The Animal Network, Inc. group as the primary source of funding for heartworm treatment.

The group's program is called "Heal My Heart" and has been successful in raising funds for this important work to continue. Potential pet parents who adopt a dog that is heartworm positive are not required to pay for the treatment. Treatment is paid for by Friends of Manatee County Animal Services. Dogs may also be fostered during treatment and all supplies are provided. All that a loving home needs to provide is a quiet crate and love.

Nobody's Pets Are Everybody's Pets: Please Donate, Volunteer, and Adopt

The Heartworm Hotel for dogs at the Manatee County Animal Services shelter is just one of the innovative programs that are being developed by the dream team management and volunteer groups that partner with the shelter. There are numerous opportunities for the Bradenton area communities to volunteer at the shelter.

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Dog walkers are needed and extra walkers for Saturdays are greatly needed. The shelter periodically holds orientations for interested persons. Interested animal lovers who wish to make a difference for these animals may sign up with the included link at the bottom of the article.

A Dog That Taught Me the Meaning of Animal Activism

I learned about this shelter almost four years ago. I encountered the eyes of this dog one day on the FaceBook page of Manatee County Animal Services shelter. Volunteers were having difficulty finding a home for this dog. The eyes of a dog are very powerful. I decided to help and put together a team to make a video of a new evaluation for this particular dog. This extra effort was successful and an awesome family stepped up at the 11th hour to give this dog an awesome home. The family recently lost their beloved dog to problems that came with age, but they gave him two years of life that were very special.

This dog will forever provide me with power to help this shelter in any way that I can.

Dedicated to Konig: The dog that continues to provide me with hope for all dogs at MCAS.

Dedicated to Konig: The dog that continues to provide me with hope for all dogs at MCAS.

© 2017 Cindy Hewitt


Cindy Hewitt (author) from Sarasota on March 06, 2017:

Another update: If anyone is interested in fostering, please visit the Face Book page Furry Friends of MCAS and send a message. Messages are closely monitored and responded to promptly. Fostering saves lives. All that a foster pet parent needs to supply is lot of love and a quiet kennel. Treats and toys would be appreciated also.

Cindy Hewitt (author) from Sarasota on March 06, 2017:

Happy update from the shelter: all 10 of the first dogs to be placed in the new Heartworm Hotel have received their first treatment. The doggie Gingerbread has been adopted with great pet parents. Approximately 1/3 of the dogs at the shelter have heartworms and there is much work to be done.

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