Especially because most vector-borne disease infections show few if any early signs, comprehensive annual testing by your veterinarian is the only way to know for sure if your dog has been exposed. Remember, too, that no preventive or vaccine is 100% effective, which makes annual checkups even more important to your dog’s health.
Vector-borne disease testing is fast and easy on your dog. To make it even easier on your pet, be sure to ask your veterinarian about vector-borne disease screening that can be run at the same time as your dog’s annual heartworm screen (see a map of reported positive cases in your area). This way, your veterinarian only has to draw one blood sample to run multiple tests.
If your dog does test positive, your veterinarian can determine the individual treatment program that’s best for your pet’s health. Keep in mind that if your dog tests positive for vector-borne disease, your entire family could be at risk of exposure, and you should take measures to keep everyone in your household safe.