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It is quite common for cats and dogs to get infected with external or internal parasites during their lifetime. There are different ways in which a parasite can affect a pet; this could range from just irritation to life-threatening diseases, in case left untreated.
Many pet owners make the mistake of assuming that their
cat or dog is free of worms if they have normal stools i.e., without their
presence. In reality, a microscopic examination of the animal's feces is
required to assess the worm situation accurately. This is why vets typically
ask for stool samples when pets come in for their yearly visits. When parasites
like roundworms, hookworms, tapeworms, giardia, and whipworms are detected at
an early stage, successful treatment is often successful. Common symptoms
related to parasitic illness are reduced appetite, diarrhea, vomiting,
"pot belly" and unhealthy hair coat.
Types Of Worms And
Some of the common worm infections in pets include the
is a parasite living in the animal's intestines and causes severe diarrhea.
These could be any number of tiny parasitic worms residing in a dog’s intestine
and drinking its blood, thus causing anemia. These worms have distinct hooked
mouthparts that can get stuck to the host’s intestinal walls.
This is a worm that lives in the lungs and/or heart of cats and dogs and is
transmitted via mosquitoes. The length of the adult worm could go up to 16
This bacterial disease is caused by certain organisms termed as 'Borrelia' and
transmitted through western and eastern deer ticks (ticks with black legs). The
disease can cause severe symptoms if left untreated.
Numerous ribbon-like flat worms that live in the animal’s intestines.
These are one of the most common type of parasitic worms that are found in both
cats and dogs. Adult roundworms typically find a home in the animal's
intestines. When an animal has severe roundworm infection, he will showcase
symptoms like dull hair, weight loss, and a potbelly.
Treatment Of Worms
External parasites such as ticks and fleas are not very
difficult to spot and pets often give away their presence by showing symptoms
like chewing, scratching, and loss of hair.
Intestinal parasites can be treated in several different ways. Most
internal worm diseases are diagnosed with the help of stool samples and blood
tests at the vet's clinic. Treatment might include a dosage of liquids,
powders, and pills, and will usually continue for about five to seven days,
depending on each individual case. In certain cases, the vet might suggest
repeating treatment in the gap of one and three months to destroy the
parasite's lifecycle completely.