Worms are extremely common in pets. In fact, most pets will have worms at least once in their life. Fortunately, worms are easily treated. All it takes is a trip to your vet and a pill given twice within a two week period.
How Pets Get Worms
Puppies and kittens can get worms from their mother. They can also get them later in life from playing outside, digging in dirt, grooming themselves, eating raw or undercooked meat, and eating infected insects and pests.
Symptoms of Worms
Worms get bigger over time and symptoms can range from mild to severe. Many pets show no signs of infection. Common symptoms include:
- Bloody stool
- Excessive licking of the hindquarters
- Weakness and fatigue
- Poor appetite
- Poor growth
- Potbelly appearance
- Rice-like segments found at base of tail
- Visible worms in vomit or stool
- Weight loss
It’s important to note that many of these symptoms can indicate another disease. This is why it’s so important to have your pet seen by a qualified vet. A simple stool sample can help determine if worms are causing the problem.
Types of Worms
Dogs and cats can become infected with a wide range of worms. The most common types include:
Roundworms – Roundworms are the most common form of worms. Most pets become infected at a young age.
Hookworms – Hookworms suck blood. These parasites can cause severe blood loss in pets.
Tapeworms – Caused by ingesting infected fleas, tapeworms are flat, segmented worms. You can tell if your pet has tapeworms by inspecting their tail. The segments look like little grains of rice.
Whipworms – Considered a highly infectious worm, pets infected with whipworms are at high risk of reinfection.
It’s important to remember that having worms isn’t a reflection of the care you give your pet. Pets can get into a lot of things and worms take advantage of this opportunity. If you suspect your pet has worms it’s important to have them seen by a qualified veterinarian. Diagnosis is typically quick and easy and treatment is as well.
Claws N Paws Day Spa offers grooming for dogs and cats. Please contact us at 714-962-1005 to schedule your next grooming appointment.