Today I was told she has tested positive for heart-worm. Heart-worm disease is a serious and potentially fatal condition caused by parasitic worms living in the arteries of the lungs and occasionally in the right side of the heart. This disease is transmitted by mosquitos but doesn't show up for almost 6 months which is the amount of time it takes the larvae to becomes adults. Spice is about a year old.
The heart-worm infects the heart and if allowed to multiply will kill the dog. There is no treatment for cats. There are three stages for treatment once diagnosed. She will begin an antibiotic series used in humans to prevent malaria and this will kill the young heart-worms. We are picking that up tonight. Next, she will receive a series of shots in order to kill the adult heart-worms. The following 1-3 months after that treatment is the most important as she must be kept quiet while the medication is killing the adult heart-worms. The goal is to cease all activity that will increase blood-flow to the heart. Finally, she will remain on a preventative medication for the rest of her life. Her prognosis is good.
Now, timing is surely everything, no? We've been in our new home for six months and it was only last week I got all new product made and photographed. It will be up on the website this weekend. All new proceeds from BellaRusticaMarket will cover the associated costs for her care and recovery.
In addition, I finally decided on a pillow design to honor our faithful friends. You cannot imagine how much thought goes into something like this! Over the last year I have had many inquires about such a pillow but I did not want it to be breed or animal specific. I finally chose the Italian phrase Sempre Fedele which translates "Always Faithful". I deliberately chose not to have an image with the phrase but instead to extend the phrase boldly across the the entire width of the pillow and to attach a small Saint Francis of Assisi (Italian Patron Saint for Animals) medal on the lower, right side. Another option is to attach the animal's tag or another personal symbol or simply nothing at all.