Prevent Heartworm; Supporting Your Pets’ Emotional Needs with Fear Free


American Heartworm Society (

Listen HERE to WGN Radio Steve Dale’s Pet World and Dr. Mike Dryden, veterinary parasitologist and Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine. He explains what heartworm disease is and why this is not a disease you want your dog or cat to get from 20 plus species of mosquitoes. In dogs, the treatment is expensive and arduous to deal with. For cats, there is no treatment. And in both dogs and cats heartworm can be deadly. And, in dogs, even if successfully treated, that dog will never quite be the same.

He explains how a study of coyotes being a reservoir for heartworm disease was recently completed in Chicago, and why this is relevant if you have a dog or a cat in the Windy City. Dr. Dryden calls the results of this study “remarkable.”

In the U.S., in excess of a million dogs do get heartworm every year.

Dr. Dryden says protection is so important, and absolutely preventatives are effective and safe.

Fear Has Changed Everything

Dr. Ken Martin

Veterinary behaviorist Dr. Ken Martin explains a transformative initiative called Fear Free, and how the website Fear Free Happy Homes can be a resource for all pet parents. Talking here on WGN Radio about preventing fear, anxiety and stress in our pets. 

He explains sometimes anxiety is difficult to identify, and how there are products now available to minimize anxiety. “There are a lot of natural products out there,” he says, and they can be used as a preventative.  Let’s make sure the puppy starts off on the right paw. Dr. Ken Martin (with Debbie Martin) are co-authors of Puppy Start Right.

(Note: I’m often asked about best books for new puppy parents and Puppy Start Right is one of the best.)

No Bunnies at Easter

Don’t impulsively purchase a rabbit for Easter.

Warning: Lilies and lovely but toxic to cats.