An Editorial Note
We have created a "one stop site" for responsible dog guardians or caregivers, to make an educated decision before using a six month heartworm injection and for you to obtain more information and research results on other drugs.
Our goal is to uncover the TRUTH about drugs and help others discover that truth. We are not publishing information with the intent to injure or damage any particular person or business, we only wish to bring the issue of a drug's safety into the light…….. for all of our dog’s safety.
There is a prescription injectable heartworm preventative for dogs that remains in their system for 6 months or longer (monthly preventatives are only in their system for up to 72 hours.) It is comprised of a ‘time-released’ formula of microspheres.
If your dog has an adverse reaction, THERE IS NO ANTIDOTE, or treatment plan that has been published.
By presenting information (verifiable by its' source) on this site, along with accounts posted as they were sent to us “in the guardians opinion,” we hope to educate the public, and help you prevent any dog from suffering the potential side effects of this drug. We encourage you to contact anyone that has posted to this site for more information relating to their specific case.
Only through public awareness can pressure be brought to bear on those responsible for these drugs, so that a successful treatment plan, or a safer drug can be developed.
This web site is available to discuss dog guardian's stories, good, bad or otherwise, from any dog guardian, or professional, with any experiences or information about new drugs.
Do the FDA statistics on new drugs accurately represent reality?
That question requires further investigation.
The FDA has admitted that incidents of adverse reactions are under-reported.
It takes time and paperwork for an adverse reaction to be reported, researched and recorded. How much time? This question hasn’t been answered yet.
Many dog guardians are being told by their veterinarian that they are not aware of any adverse reactions to this injection.
However, Dr. Hampshire reported to Jennifer Fiala of DVM Magazine on 11/1/03 that there are reactions and deaths related to a six month heartworm preventative injection.
The 1996 amendments to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) mandate publicly accessible “electronic reading rooms” with agency FOIA response materials and other information routinely available to the public, with electronic search and indexing features. Unfortunately we do not know how up to date these records are. It takes time to pull up the Cumulative/Annual Report from the FDA site. So in “our opinion,” this may be why some veterinarians and dog guardians have not investigated reactions being reported to the FDA. It has been noted, and it is generally agreed among statisticians, “that most figures of this type only reflect 10% to 15% of the actual cases.”
Senior dogs appear to be more susceptible to adverse reactions with this drug.
In the clinical testing of this drug, deaths were reported by the manufacturer.
Therefore, it is often assumed that an older dog is simply manifesting the signs of aging, when; in fact, possibly it was a drug reaction that precipitated a chain of events that caused or accelerated the death. There may be a substantial number of cases of adverse reactions to this injection that go unreported for this reason.
It is also important to note that, in the majority of the reports of adverse events presented on this website, the veterinarian prescribing this injection either failed to give warnings about the drug's potential side effects or told the client “they were insignificant, just talk from the Internet, that the drug was safe and there were no side-effects.”
Before making the decision to give your dog this injection, we encourage you to become fully informed about the drug's benefits and risks, to evaluate whether your veterinarian is fully informed about potential side effects. Ask them if they have seen and read the latest Dear Doctor letter dated August 28, 2003. Then review with your veterinarian the benefits of the drug versus the risks for your dog.
This six month injection is promoted as a 'convenience' for dog guardians. Would you take a shot that gave you a six-month 'convenience' dose of aspirin? (If you do, without extensive treatment, you'll die.)
Convenience does not make any product safe.
Please read what other dog guardians are reporting to us (they assuredly will bring tears to your eyes.) You will definitely want to read the most recent edition of the Dear Doctor letter and the 3rd edition of the label.
The manufacturer has amended the label for this six month injection to include new warnings required by the FDA due to the growing number of reports of adverse effects possibly associated with it. The manufacturer has an information sheet, which also should be available at your vet’s office. This may also list some of the questions that you may have. The manufacturer also has available upon request an MSDS sheet.
What do you really understand about heartworms? We know when we were told by our vet or their assistant after a heartworm test on our dog that it was "negative"… we thought it meant our dog did not have heartworms. Not true. Current tests do not detect all stages or the male sex. Read on, there is a section of this web site from the American Heartworm Society.
Stated in a FDA/CVM newletter: "Canine heartworm infection has been found in dogs in all 50 States. All dogs regardless of their age, sex, or habitat are susceptible to heartworm infection. The highest infection rates (up to 45%) in dogs not maintained on heartworm preventive are found within 150 miles of the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Coast from Texas to New Jersey and along the Mississippi River and its major tributaries. Other areas of the United States have lower incidence rates (5% or less) of canine heartworm disease."
Keep in mind, as you read the stories made voluntarily on this site, the normal tendency for people are to report ‘negative’ experiences rather than ‘positive.’ Many of the side effects reports are also "anecdotal" in that before 11/1/03 neither the manufacturer nor the FDA had established a clear relationship between this injection and the observed reactions. We recognize that every dog guardian's story that is presented on this website does not scientifically establish that this injection caused any or all of the adverse experiences described.
We do not intend to mislead you, nor present information that would influence you to believe that scientific research has proven anything other than what the manufacturer states on their website and label. We encourage all dog guardians to learn more about this product and how it should be administered. We would like you to compare the symptoms/adverse reactions being described by the dog guardians to the adverse reactions listed on the label and then to the symptoms/adverse reactions listed by the FDA and the Freedom of Information Summary submitted to the FDA.
You can assist everyone, and especially the FDA, in the much needed effort to insure the safety of this injection, by reporting any suspected adverse reaction to the manufacturer (make sure you receive a case number) and then call the FDA at: 1-888-332-8387 (or 1-888-FDA-VETS).
Any and all communication is considered private,
and all transmissions become the property of DOGS Adverse Reactions..