WORMING

What kind of worms can infect my pet?
The two most common types of worms that are found in the U.K. are roundworm and tapeworm. There are several different species of each and cats and dogs are susceptible to all of them.

How does my pet become infected?
Worm eggs are excreted in the faeces of infected cats and dogs and can survive in the soil for more than a year. These eggs stick to your pet’s feet and coat and are then swallowed while grooming themselves. The eggs then mature into adult worms in the intestines, heart or lungs.
Fleas contain the larvae of tapeworm and when the flea is swallowed when the pet licks itself, the larvae is also consumed.
Cats often become infected by eating birds and small mammals which contain tapeworm. Both dogs and cats can be infected with roundworm by eating rodents and birds.
All puppies and kittens are born already infected with roundworms which have been passed on from their mothers via the placenta.

Is there a risk to me or my family?
If your pet has roundworm eggs on its coat these can be transferred to you when you stroke your pet. If these eggs are swallowed they can hatch into larvae and migrate to different areas of your body. A common site is the back of the eye which can then cause blindness. In the vast majority of cases, swallowing these eggs will be completely harmless but children in particular are much more at risk.
Tapeworms can cause cysts to form in different organs of the human body e.g. the liver or brain.

How often should I worm my pet?
This will depend on your pet’s lifestyle. If your dog or cat is in frequent contact with children you should use a wormer once a month. Worming tablets will only kill the parasites that your pet is infected with at the time of worming, there is no long term protection. If your pet consumes worm eggs the next day, he or she will be re-infected. However, the worm life-cycle from egg to larvae to adult takes approximately one month and if you are treating your pet monthly, you can be sure that you are protecting your family.

Dogs

It is important to worm all dogs but it is especially important to worm pregnant bitches and puppies. We worm puppies against Roundworm, these worms normally live in the small intestine and pass infective larvae which can be picked up by children as well as other dogs. Puppies should be wormed at least twice with an effective wormer, I recommend Panacur which is not only very effective when given over a three day period but also has a wide safety margin. Panacur can be given in the food as a powder or directly into the mouth as a paste/liquid. Dogs should be wormed at 6 months old and a minimum of three times a year thereafter. If your pet has contact with children it would be advisable to worm 4 times a year. Adults may be wormed with Panacur or with Drontal Plus tablets which treat for both Round and Tape worms in a single dose

Cats

It is important to worm all cats throughout their life. but it is especially important to worm pregnant queens and kittens. We worm kittens against Roundworm, these worms normally live in the small intestine and pass infective larvae which can be picked up by children as well as other cats. Kittens should be wormed at least twice with an effective wormer, I recommend Panacur which is not only very effective when given over a three day period but also has a wide safety margin. Panacur can be given in the food as a powder or directly into the mouth as a paste or liquid.

Cats should be wormed at 6 months old and a minimum of twice a year thereafter. If your pet has contact with children it would be advisable to worm 3 – 4 times a year. Adult cats may be wormed with Panacur for Round worms or with Drontal tablets which treat for both Round and Tape worms in a single dose.

Cats may also suffer from tapeworm infestation , either from hunting (and eating!) small mammals or by eating fleas as they groom themselves. Treatment for tapeworm can either be tablets ( Drontal or Droncit ) or by Droncit injection. If your cat suffers from tapeworm , remember to look for fleas as a possible source of the tapeworm. Efficient hunters may require to be treated for tapeworm on a regular basis as they will reinfest themselves when they eat their prey.

Share