Caval Syndrome caused by heart worms

Bert’s Bertie County Shelter Picture

Handsome Bert found himself at the Bertie County Shelter where he was confused and terrified. After being left behind by another rescue for being scared and HW+, the shelter reached out to us, and we welcomed him with open arms. He was settling into his foster home and learning to trust when some of his bloodwork came back very concerning. After Triangle Veterinary Referral Hospital reviewed his results, it was confirmed that he had Caval Syndrome — a severe form of heartworm disease. The vet told us that once symptoms of Caval syndrome start to show, dogs only have 1–2 days to live without treatment. Thankfully, NC State Vet School was able to move mountains to admit him and perform his life-saving surgery in the wee hours of Saturday morning. It was a very risky procedure (YouTube video here if you are interested, warning it is graphic: and they told us up front that it would cost between $5000-$7000 that there was about a 50% chance he wouldn’t make it, but without the surgery he would not live — so we paid the deposit and told them to please try to save him!

Bert at NC State Vet Hospital

After the surgery, the surgeon called to tell us that they successfully removed 53 worms from Bert’s heart and that he pulled through like a champ. The next day his recovery AMAZED the surgeon and tests showed that his heart looked nearly perfect, and his bloodwork looked great, so he was able to go to his foster home. His foster mom said the change is remarkable, Bert is now following her around, wagging his tail and acting more like a happy beagle boy. Bert’s story has a happy ending, but this is not the case for many heartworm positive dogs and the thing is this is all preventable!! Please make sure you always give your dogs their monthly heartworm prevention, so they do not have to endure the pain and suffering caused by heartworms. Bert’s lifesaving surgery was very costly, and we can use your help. If his story touched your heart, please consider making a donation to help defray the costs. Thank you!

Venmo @tribeagles


Triangle Beagle Rescue

13200 STRICKLAND RD STE 114–287

Raleigh NC 27613

Bert in recovery mode!

We rescue beagles in the Triangle area of North Carolina, what is your Superpower?