Published: Jun 15, 2011 6:01 PM EDT
Updated: Jun 15, 2011 6:01 PM EDT

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla - The Collier County Health Department and the Collier Mosquito Control District are reminding residents that horses, dogs and cats are susceptible to mosquito-borne diseases just like humans. During the 2010 mosquito season, four local horses had to be euthanized due to contracting Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE).

Fortunately, there are vaccines to prevent horses from being infected by EEE and West Nile virus. Dogs and cats are susceptible to a mosquito-borne disease called Dog Heartworm (DHW) which can be fatal. Maintenance plans of prescribed medications will guard your dogs and cats from DHW. Being informed and avoiding complacency are keys to safeguarding your pets from mosquito-borne diseases. Contact your veterinarian for the latest information on preventative options, including vaccinations. 

In addition, don’t forget to protect your yourself and your family from being bitten by mosquitoes by practicing the five D’s of mosquito prevention:

  • Avoid being outside during Dusk & Dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
  • Dress so your skin is covered:  wear shoes, socks, long pants and long-sleeved shirts.
  • Drain stagnant water so mosquitoes cannot thrive.
  • Wear insect repellent containing DEET.