It's the weekend, which means it's finally time for Athena's Caturday Art Blog Hop.
After the recent discussion on tapeworms, we thought we'd briefly discuss a couple of other similar intestinal parasites, these being roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms. We won't go into all of the science for each of these worms, but we will touch on the basics of such infestations. So, if you're interested in these wormy parasites, read on.
Depending on the worm, cats and dogs can potentially become infected with the aforementioned worms as kittens or puppies, such as in utero or from their mother's milk. Worms can also find their way to a cat or dog's intestines by the ingestion of a rodent or other carrier of the parasite, or by ingesting the parasite in certain stages of its life cycle elsewhere in the environment. Symptoms of such an infestation can include diarrhea, vomiting, weight loss, a potbellied appearance, and sometimes even sight of the worms in your furbaby's feces.
If you think your kitty or pup might have intestinal worms, such as if they are a young puppy or kitty with a potbelly, if you see worms in their feces, or if you see any other potential signs, of course take your furbaby and a stool sample to be examined by a veterinarian. Parasiticides can be used to eradicate these intestinal parasites. Just as with tapeworms, though, it is important to use preventative measures to keep your kitty or pup clear of them from then on. Keep their environment clean in order to prevent growth of the worms in the environment. In addition, if your furbaby goes outdoors, monitor them and try to ensure that they are not ingesting prey that are potential carriers of intestinal parasites, such as rodents. If needed, such as if your cat or dog is largely outdoors, discuss with your veterinarian the potential for keeping your furbaby on regular preventatives that cover intestinal parasites such as roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms.