Cats are at risk from a number of intestinal parasites. Commonly referred to as “worms,” these greedy interlopers can steal a cat’s nutrition and even make humans sick.
What do vets want you to know about worms in cats? Here’s the scoop.
Common Worms in Cats
Worms come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They can be regionally specific, seasonal, or even make their way through a specific cat population. Here are a few of the most common worms in cats.
The most common intestinal parasites in cats, roundworms measure about 3-4” long and resemble spaghetti (yuck!)
Much smaller than roundworms, hookworms are usually less than 1” long and live in cats’ small intestines. They can cause life-threatening anemia in adult cats and especially in kittens.
Tapeworms are long and flat, resembling strips of tape. They are segmented and can be anywhere from 4-24” in length. Over time, a tapeworm infestation usually causes vomiting and/or weight loss.
How Cats Get Worms
It’s much easier for cats to get parasites than you might think. Cats usually pick up worms themselves by ingesting the feces of other infected cats. For this reason, outdoor cats are far more likely to suffer from worms.
Since worms live in a wide variety of hosts, cats can get certain parasites by ingesting infected animals like snails, slugs, fleas, or even rodents. Mother cats can also pass worms on to their kittens during nursing or even through close contact.
Cats who don’t receive regular preventative care are most at-risk of worm infestation. Since fleas can harbor a wide variety of bacteria and parasites, keeping your cat flea-free is the first step towards keeping them worm-free, too.
How to Tell if Your Cat Has Worms
Worms present in a variety of ways. Some cats display lots of visible symptoms while some don’t show any signs at all. Evaluation for parasite infection is one of the most important reasons for a qualified veterinarian to see your cat at least once a year.
A few of the most common signs your cat might have worms include:
- Visible worm segments or whole worms in your cat’s feces or around his anus
- Bloody stool/diarrhea
- Unexplained weight loss (especially if hunger level is unchanged)
- Bloated or especially rounded belly
- Constant coughing
- Difficulty breathing
If you have any reason to suspect your cat might have worms, make an appointment with a veterinarian immediately. Only a vet can accurately diagnose your pet with worms and provide your cat with the medicine he needs to get rid of parasites.
Also, remember that it is possible for cats to transmit certain kinds of worms to humans! Roundworms, for example, can easily travel from feline to human host. Be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after touching a cat you suspect might have worms and to use gloves if handling his feces.
How to Treat and Prevent Worms
Treating worms is usually relatively simple. Once the specific type of worm has been identified, your vet will prescribe your cat a course of medication designed to eradicate the infection. These medications differ by worm type; i.e. roundworm treatment won’t work to kill hookworms.
After being treated for worms, you’ll notice worms and/or worm segments in your cat’s feces. Don’t be alarmed – this is just his body ridding itself of the parasites – but do be cautious when handling or disposing of the excrement.
The best way to prevent a parasitic infection in your cat is to keep him out of harm’s way. Cats who live indoors are less likely to get worms, as are cats who stay flea- and tick-free through the use of prescription prevention medications.
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Things You’ll Need
Food grade diatomaceous earth
Wormwood herbal wormer
Raw pumpkin seed
Blender or food grinder
Take your cat to the veterinarian if none of the natural remedies are eliminating the worm infestation.
Worms are a very common problem in cats. Symptoms your cat may display that she has worms are vomiting, loss of appetite and diarrhea. There are many over the counter deworming medications for cats, but many pet owners prefer natural remedies that are less expensive, safer and just as effective.
Feed your cat some food grade diatomaceous earth. Diatomaceous earth is the fossilized remains of microscopic shells that work by cutting into the bodies of worms and other parasites with its very sharp edges, which kills them. Mix two teaspoons of diatomaceous earth in your cat’s wet food twice a day for a minimum of 30 days to eliminate internal parasites and worms.
Treat your cat’s worms with some wormwood herbal wormer. According to Vet Info, this safe and natural herb is very effective against worms and parasites. Read and follow the directions carefully on the label. You can find wormwood herbal wormers at your local pet store.
Give your cat some finely ground raw pumpkin seed to naturally treat worms. Pumpkin seeds are anti-parasitic and full of valuable nutrients for your cat. Use a blender or food grinder to finely grind the pumpkin seed and mix one teaspoon in your cat’s wet food daily to effectively kill worms.
Dust your cat in food grade diatomaceous earth once a week to kill the fleas that cause worms in your pet. Fleas transmit worms to your cat that can lead to disease. Diatomaceous earth not only kills internal parasites, but it also kills external parasites like fleas that can give your pet worms. Make sure you go outside and use a dust mask when applying, so you do not inhale the fine dust particles.
Prevent your cat from becoming infested with worms and other parasites. Keep her indoors as much as possible and check her feces regularly for signs of worms. If you notice any, treat your cat immediately to kill the parasites and prevent infestation.
Healthy looking animals can carry worms, so it’s important to worm pets regularly. Your vet will be best to advise which type of treatment and method you should use for your pet.
Worms can cause suffering, illness and even death. Some types of worms can be spread between pets and people and can cause diseases.
Worm treatment for pets
- Maintain a regular worm treatments – ask your vet for the best treatment and method to deworm your pet
- Treat pets for roundworm from a young age and, when they’re adults, tapeworms also
- Different worms may need different treatments – ask your vet which treatment is safe and suitable for your pet
- Prevent tapeworms by using a flea treatment regularly, as fleas can carry tapeworm eggs
How to prevent worms in pets
- Disinfect food and water bowls regularly
- Ensure housing is regularly cleaned and disinfected, but only use a disinfectant that is safe for animals
- Good pasture management is required for horses, ponies, donkeys and rabbits to prevent them from eating the larvae and eggs of worms. This may involve removing droppings and rotating which areas your animal has access to
- For rabbits, avoid collecting greens from areas where wild rabbits and rodents have been and if kept outside, place housing so that exposure to wild rabbits and rodents is minimised
- Pregnant animals should only be wormed under the supervision of a vet
- Clean up after your pet and dispose of faeces carefully
- Wash your hands thoroughly before you eat.
Thinking about buying a puppy? Avoid buying from breeders who don’t worm their dogs and puppies.
Signs of worms in pets
It may be difficult to see any symptoms of your pet having worms but it’s important to have a regular worm treatment in place, as advised by your vet.
If your pet does have the parasite, you may see worms in faeces or vomit, or around your pet’s bottom. Wrap any worms you find on or near your pet in damp cotton wool and take them to your vet, so they can advise the best worm treatment.
Other signs your pet could have worms
- Your pet starts losing weight.
- Their fur is becoming dry and coarse
- Increased appetite, weakness and diarrhoea
- In severe cases, infected puppies and kittens can have a distended abdomen or ‘pot belly’.
Why do pets get worms?
Animals can pick worms up in a variety of ways, from:
- other infected animals
- eating the larvae or eggs of worms (e.g. in infected faeces or in grass)
- eating raw meat, infected prey animals or infected parasites.
Kittens and roundworm
Many kittens have roundworm because it’s commonly passed on to them in their mother’s milk. This means that having your kitten treated regularly for worms is important to keep them healthy and happy. If worms are left untreated your cat may become very unwell.
Thinking about buying a kitten? Avoid buying from breeders who don’t worm their cats and kittens.
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How do cats get worms?
It is important to understand what happens if your cat becomes infested with worms and how you can prevent it from happening.
One of the main ways cats can get worms is through the ingestion of faeces excreted by infected felines. Cats can also pass the parasites on to their kittens.
Our blog post will help you to recognise some of the symptoms of worms in cats and how to tell whether your pet is affected:
What are worms?
Cats can pick up a range of intestinal parasites, including some that are referred to as ‘worms’.
These infestations can cause a range of symptoms, which can go undetected but can be serious if they go untreated.
What do worms look like?
Roundworms are the most common parasites in cats. They look a little like spaghetti and are around three to six inches long.
Hookworms are much smaller than roundworms in length and reside primarily in the small intestine. They feed on animal blood and can cause life-threatening anaemia, especially in kittens. Their eggs are passed in the stool and then hatch into larvae.
Tapeworms live in the small intestine of cats and are long and flat – some are as long as 30 inches! They are a white/cream colour and have a ribbon like appearance.
Another type of worm is a lungworm, although these reside in cats’ lungs. Cats who get an infestation often develop a cough.
Where do cats get worms from?
Exposure to contaminated soil, contaminated water or areas where other animals defecate are all ways that a cat can get worms.
Nursing kittens can get worms from an infected mother’s milk, while adult cats can acquire them by hunting and ingesting small animals like rats, birds and rabbits who can act as transmitters of the parasites.
What are the common symptoms of worms in cats?
Illnesses differ depending on the type of worm infestation. Some of the common symptoms include:
- Bloated belly
- Dark and tarry stool
- Weight loss
- Biting/licking/scratching the anus
If worms are left untreated for a long time, the effects can potentially be fatal – particularly for kittens. The long term effect of worms in cats include anaemia from a loss of blood, or a blockage in the intestines caused by too many tapeworms – both of which can have devastating consequences.
How do you prevent and treat worms in cats?
The most effective way to prevent worms in cats is to, where possible, keep cats indoors and avoid their exposure to rats, birds, rabbits, fleas and faeces.
Many inexpensive treatments for worms are available, such as an injection that your vet can give, a tiny tablet that can go in with food, or even some drops that can be applied to the skin.
If you suspect that your cat is suffering with worms, it’s important to book an appointment to see your vet as soon as you can. We have cat insurance to protect your pet from any health issues they may face.
As a cat parent or an aspiring cat parent, it is significant to learn how to get rid of worms in cats. There are a number of worms that can attack your cat at any given time.
The most common ones include roundworms, hookworms and tapeworms. Worms are not only a threat to your cat, some of them can also be transferred to humans.
Therefore, it is not only vital to learn how to treat worms in cats but most importantly, how to prevent your cat from a worm infestation.
Table of Contents
How to Get Rid of Worms in Cats- Prevention and Control.
The first step you should take to protect your cat from worms is prevention. There are a number of things you can do to prevent worms from attacking your kitty.
Fleas are one of the biggest agents of worms in cats. They carry worms with them and they can transfer them to your cat. Administering the best flea treatment for cats can help you keep fleas at bay.
Make sure you consult your veterinarian in order to get information on the most suitable medication for your cat and also how to administer the medication properly. Brushing your cat’s fur using a flea comb also helps to prevent fleas.
Maintain a clean home
A dirty house is a breeding place for fleas. Clean your house including bedding (both human and cat bedding) to get rid of flea larvae that might have gotten in.
Ensure that the yard remains clean and keep outdoor material out of the house to help prevent a flea infestation.
Keeping your cat indoors
The risks your cat can potentially face when outdoors trumps the fulfillment she gets from a few hours of adventure at your backyard. Indoor cats are healthier and they also live longer.
The outdoors exposes your cat to dangers like predators, cars and parasites like worms. If you really have to take your cat outside make sure you supervise her or get a cat harness.
Watch your cat’s diet
Feeding your cat high quality healthy food protects them from fleas.
Consult your vet to get a recommendation on the best diet that will give your cat all the nutrients and vitamins, necessary to boost your cat’s immunity and attain an optimal health.
Make sure your cat does not consume raw or under-cooked meat.
Also, if your cat spends time outdoors make sure to watch over her. The dead mice or birds that your cat might find outdoors could infect your cats with worms.
Test the cat’s feces regularly
Testing your cat’s feces once or twice a year helps to catch and treat worms early. The frequency of testing increases for outdoor cats because their chances of getting worms are higher.
Check out this article on how to check cats for worms.
Protect yourself from infection
Some worms can be transmitted to humans so make sure to protect yourself from worms.
Use rubber gloves when handling your cat’s litter box and also wash your hands after petting an infected cat.
Isolate infected cats
If you are a cat parent of multiple cats and one of your kitties has worms, isolate her from the rest.
Keep the infected cat separate until a veterinarian confirms that she is free of worms. Make sure the rest of the cats are also tested.
Common Symptoms of Worms in Cats
- Coughing/difficulty breathing.
- Bloody stool and excessive scratching or biting.
How to Treat Worms in Cats
Keeping an eye on the symptoms of worms ensures that the problem is detected early and treatment is commenced immediately. Some cats might not show the signs of worms that’s why testing feces is important.
If your cat exhibits the symptoms of worms, contact your veterinarian and make an appointment. Worms need to be treated by a qualified veterinarian so do not attempt to deal with them on your own.
Your vet will perform a series of tests to make a diagnosis and if your cat has worms he/she will provide the proper treatment plan.
Although over the counter dewormers might work on some worms, it could be harmful when used to treat specific type of worms. However, purchasing over the counter medication is not advised especially without a clinical diagnosis.
The three most common types of worms in cats are ringworms, roundworms and tapeworms. These worms are usually transmitted through a contaminated enviroment or an infected animal. If left untreated worms can have a negative effect on your cat’s health. Below we will discuss how to treat theses three types of worms in cats.
Ringworm is a fungal infection and not actually a physical worm. This infection can be transmitted from your cat to you and affects your cat’s skin, hair and nails. Patches of hair loss, dry flaky skin,and excessive shedding are all signs of ringworms. Once your cat has ringworms his or her grooming supplies will also become contaminated and will have to be replaced.Your vet will conduct several test to diagnose ringworms, he will proform a fungal culture test by removing some hairs and ringworm scales from your cat and examining them.
Ringworms are treated by either a oral or topical cream treatment or a combination of both, depending on the severity of the infection. A lime sulfur topical treatment is usually prescribe by your vet and sometimes an anti fungal oral drug, such as Griseofulvin.Your vet may recommend that you clip your cat’s nails, since ringworms can also affect their nails, and to shave your cat if he/she is a long haired cat, so that it’s much easier to treat the ringworms.
Since this type of worms in cats can also contaminate your environment you will need to throughly disinfect your home. Steam clean your carpets,, couches and mattress. Replace all of your pets grooming equipement; brushes, combs, throughly vacuum your home and wash all sheets, pillows and blankets. Also keep in mind that due to the fact that ringworm is contagious, other cats and dogs in your household will also need to be treated.
Roundworms are the most common type of worms in cats, they are 3-4 inches long, light in color and make their home inside your cat. There are two types of roundworms Toxocara cati and Toxascaris leonina, Toxocara cati being the more common one. This type of worm is also transmitted through a contaminated environment, infected animal and sometimes through a cat’s milk into their kittens.
If your cat starts to exhibit a pot bellied appearance, a dull coat that is usually shiny and healthy,diarrhea and vomiting:in some cases actually vomiting up worms,then he/she needs to go to the vet to check for roundworms. Through a test called fecal flotation your vet will be able to diagnose if your cat is infected with roundworms. This is a very common type of worm in cats and can be treated with medication.
Your vet will recommend the right deworming medication for your cat, some are prescribed or others can be purcheased over the counter, most require folow up treatments.During the deworming process you may actually see the worms in your cat’s stool, this is normal. Regular deworming treatments and regularly scooping your cat’s waste are both recommended in the prevention of roundworms. Roundworms isone of several cat illneeses, to find out about others visit Common Cat Health Problems.
Dipylidium Caninum are the most common type of tapeworm found in cats. They are light in colur,flat and have different segments. Tapeworm is transmitted when a cat who has fleas swallows a flea that is carrying a tapeworm. The tapeworm is released once the flea is broken down inside the cat.
Cats can also get tapeworms by consuming rodents who are infected. Tapeworms can cause your cat to lose weight and cause their fur to become very dull and dry, the worms takes all the essential vitamins that your cat needs.
You may noticed segments of tapeworms in your cat’s feces when scooping or around your cat’s anus area. Your vet will conduct an examination by examining a smear from your cats anus under a microscope and will recommend an oral medication or injection to treat the tapeworms. Your vet may also recommend that you get your cat treated for fleas, because usually where there are tapeworms there are fleas. To find out more about how to treat fleas, read Cat Flea Treatment:How To Get Rid Of Those Pesky Fleas.
Tips To Preventing Worms In Cats
- Regularly deworm your cat
- Outdoor cats or cats that go into boarding should get vaccinated for ringworms
- Regularly scooping your cat’s fecal waste
- If your cat is diagnosis with worms,treat your enviroment and other pets in the household
- Take your cat to the vets as soon as you notice any signs of infestation
- Regularly groom your cat
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“There are few things in life more heartwarming than to be welcomed by a cat.”
Don’t let them worm their way into your household – stay diligent on intestinal worms and keep your cat healthy.
What are intestinal worms?
Intestinal worms are internal parasites that live inside your cat’s body and feed off them once contracted. The most common varieties of intestinal worms in Australia are roundworm, tapeworm, and hookworm.
Roundworm and hookworm can be passed to kittens through their mother’s milk, or from the environment via contaminated faeces, water or soil.
Tapeworm is contracted when a cat eats fleas that have been infested with tapeworm. There are different types of tapeworms including the flea tapeworm and hydatid tapeworm. Ensure your cat’s worming treatment provides full coverage.
Product recommendations for worm control
Can an indoor cat get intestinal worms?
Yes, just because your cat never leaves the house doesn’t mean that other members of your family aren’t coming in and out and unintentionally bringing nasties back with them. Worm eggs are microscopic and can easily attach to clothing and shoes so make sure to remove or clean them before heading inside.
Can I get worms from my cat?
Some species of worms, including roundworms, tapeworms and hookworms, can spread from cats to humans if we accidentally ingest the worm eggs.
Stay vigilant with your hygiene and wash your hands thoroughly after handling your cat or playing in the garden as these eggs can cling to your cat’s fur, or survive for years in your garden soil.
Children are especially susceptible to contracting roundworm for these reasons so make sure to encourage their hygiene and keep their play area away from your cat’s litter tray.
Further, parasites like hookworm can pass from your cat to your family as the larvae is able to pierce through your skin if you walk barefoot through contaminated soil.
How do you prevent worms in cats?
Regularly providing your cat with worming treatment such as a tablet or a spot-on will help you prevent worms in your cat. Worming needs to be performed as a form of preventive health care whether worms are seen in droppings or not, as many worms are too small to be seen by the naked eye. Use our Flea, Tick and Worm Treatment Finder to understand which products will provide your pet with full protection.
How can I tell if my cat has intestinal worms?
Intestinal worms can cause diarrhoea, vomiting, weight loss, loss of appetite, anaemia and, in extreme cases, death. Look out for symptoms such as bottom dragging or ‘scooting’, weight loss, weakness, dehydration and lethargy.
How do you get rid of intestinal worms in a cat?
Being proactive and preventing your cat from contracting worms is always better than having to treat them after the fact.
However if your cat has already contracted worms or you suspect that they have, the best thing to do is to bring them and a sample of their stool in to your local Greencross Vets where they can perform a professional examination and diagnose which worm your pet has.
Once the worm has been identified, your Greencross vet will be able to provide your pet with the right medication to treat their worm infestation.
Last Updated on June 29th, 2020
If you own a cat sooner or later, you will have to deal with parasites. I, for example, discovered that my cat had worms when I noticed those wiggly things under her tail. It was quite a shock to see in two months old kittens.
You can indeed deal with parasites by getting a pill from your vet. But if you’re concerned about the toxicity of the dewormer, you might be looking for a natural way to deal with cats with worms.
Fortunately, that’s why I’m here. I’m going to offer you six home remedies for deworming cats at home. Just keep on reading.
What causes worms in cats?
Before we talk about home remedies for cat parasites, let’s learn more about the different types of worms in cats and how cats get infected. That’s going to help you prevent a second infestation once you deal with the imminent crisis.
So, cats often get infected with:
Roundworms are the most common parasites in cats, and they are responsible for almost 75% of all worm infestations. Often kittens get roundworms from their mother when the mother cat hasn’t been dewormed properly before the birth.
Roundworms are 3-5 inches long, and they live in your cat’s intestines. As such, these worms steal your cat’s nutrients so that no matter how much your cat eats, she doesn’t put on weight. In addition to this, roundworms are highly contagious because your cat sheds infected eggs with her stool and could lead to intestinal blockage.
Tapeworms resemble a ribbon or a tape, and they are made of segments that break off when the worm matures. These segments are shed in the feces and look like grains of rice. Cats get tapeworms when they eat a host infected with tapeworm eggs such as a flea or a rodent.
Hookworms, as the name suggests, attach themselves to your cat’s intestines and feed off her blood. Since the larvae live in the soil, your cat might swallow it easily when she digs outside. Hookworm infestation is very serious since it might lead to anemia.
Whipworms, on the other hand, are relatively rare. They live in the large intestines and don’t cause any major health problems in cats.
Signs and symptoms of worms in cats
I’m sure that by now you’re wondering how you can tell if your cat has worms. Besides seeing the nasty parasites in your cat’s stool, here are the most common signs of worm infestation in cats:
It is said when the stomach is upset everything seems upset. Pet cat often be a victim of the worm, and it is a good idea to check the warning signals. An adult cat can easily get worms as they accidently eat them while licking in a ground or by some street food whereas young kitten often gets worms through their mother milk if a cat is already being affected by worms.
The Most Common Type of Worms in Cats Are:
- Tapeworm: they are segmented parasites and their length ranges from 4 to 28 inches can be seen on the fur of a cat.
- Roundworm: These are the most common type of worm which cat can easily get through rodent these worms resemble like noodles (sorry for making noodle yuck) and may vary 4 to 28 inches in length.
- Hookworm: Much smaller in size they reside primarily in the small intestine, they feed on animal blood and can cause anemia.
How do Cats Get Worms?
As worms can transmit from one body to another cat, usually get infected by rodents or by eating birds and rodent. Kitten usually get worms through mother milk.
Symptoms of Worm in a Cat?
- Usually, the tapeworm is visible near anus if you observe keenly appears white like sesame seeds.
- Change in color and lustrous of cats coat.
- If cats gums are pale or white in color other than pink in color which is a sign of no worms.
- Dark tarry stool
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
Home Remedy for Worm in Cat
As like any other pet infection parasite can also be treated by simple home remedies. But if it gets worse do consult your vet for further procedure. Here I am sharing some of the home remedies which you can perform on having the worm in your cat.
Home Remedies for Dog’s Bad Breath
Home Remedies for Dog’s Itchy Skin that You Should Know
Garlic the powerful antiseptic and antibacterial qualities useful in many home remedy can be used to treat parasite.
What you need:-
- One tablespoon of garlic powder
- Wet cat food
- Allow your cat too fast one night before you give garlic so that they will eat whatever comes in their way.
- Add one tablespoon of garlic powder in wet cat food
- Repeat this in evening meal too
- Follow this remedy for two weeks
Apple Cider Vinegar
Helps in maintaining body ph level rich in antioxidant helps in healing worm.
What you need
- Just add 2-3 drops of your cat’s water
- Follow this for two weeks
Because of its diuretic property helps in deworming process contains a high amount of antioxidant helps in flushing all toxin from the body.
- Bunch of fresh parsley
- 1 liter of boiled water
- Add parsley to boiled water and let it sit for few minutes
- After few minutes allow it to cool down and strain it
- Store it in jar up to two weeks in refrigerator
- Add 2 -3 drops to add water
- Repeat this for ones a day for ten
This miracle fruit works wonder in constipation likewise when consume by cat pushes out worms through digestive extract.
What you need
- Wash cut and chops into small pieces.
- Mix ½ teaspoon with wet cat food.
- Repeat this daily for two weeks.
Grapefruit Seed Extract
This magical fruit has the capability to fight against viral, bacteria and parasites.High in vitamin C, antioxidant and hesperidin, an immune booster will help fight against cat worms.
What you need
- Grapefruit seed extracts one jar.
- Mixer or food processor.
- Grind the grapefruit seed extract in a blender into a fine powder.
- Add 8 mg of powder per 100 gram of wet cat food.
- Repeat this one’s a day for two weeks.
Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth
It is a parasite fighting agent for internal and external parasites helps a cat to get rid of worms.
What you need
- Wet cat food.
- Food grade Diatomaceous Earth two
- Mix Food grade Diatomaceous earth with wet cat food.
- Offer this to your cat once a day for at least one month.
No wonder turmeric tops the list in ayurvedic with many health benefits not only for human being but also, for animals too. Powerful in fighting from the parasite and also anti-inflammatory helps in discomfort by worms.
What you need
- Turmeric powder
- Wet cat food
- For every 450gram to 4.5 kg add 1/16 to 1/8 tablespoon to wet cat food.
- Combine well.
- Offer these a day for at least ten
Raw Pumpkin Seed
High in anti-parasite property kills any larvae or adult parasite and prevent them from returning.
What you need
- 1 cup of organic pumpkin seed.
- Wet cat food.
- Wash and grind pumpkin seeds into fine powder.
- Add one teaspoon to wet cat food.
- Repeat this one’s a day for 21 days.
If you’re a long-time cat owner — especially of outdoor cats — you may be all too familiar with the sight of what appears to be small grains of rice around your cat’s anus. Ewww, worms!
Just as in humans, it’s normal and healthy for a cat’s stomach and intestines to contain a variety of microscopic organisms. But sometimes the eggs of parasites get into your cat’s digestive system, developing into adult worms that feed off the food going through his or her gut and steal its nutrition. Worms produce more eggs that are shed in the cat’s feces and spread to other hosts.
The most common unwanted tenants of your cat’s digestive tract are roundworms, tapeworm and Coccidia. Roundworms look like short strands of thick white thread, and a cat with a particularly bad case may actually vomit them. Adult roundworms lay eggs that can be seen under a microscope in a cat’s stool. Tapeworms attach to the lining of the cat’s intestine by their heads and grow by segments. Each egg-containing segment is shed with the cat’s stool. Sometimes, the tapeworm segments — the “grains of rice” mentioned above — can be found clinging to the cat’s anus. Coccidia are actually microscopic one-celled organisms that live and breed in the cat’s intestines.
So where did the worms come from? Fleas are one likely culprit — tapeworms sometimes lay eggs in them. When a cat swallows the flea with the tapeworm eggs while grooming, voila — infestation. Similarly, a cat who goes outdoors is likely to come in contact with eggs (or spores in the case of Coccidia) shed in the infected cat’s stool. Another common pathway comes in the form of infected birds, mice or other unfortunate small creatures that your cat captures and eats.
You can’t really treat worms effectively in your cat at home without help from your vet. However, you can learn what to look for when you’re trying to figure out if your cat has worms.
It can be difficult to tell if your cat has worms (unless you see the evidence yourself). Kittens with worms may have diarrhea, slow weight gain and a potbelly. Infected adult cats may have dark tarry stools, vomiting, diarrhea and weight loss. However, both are just as likely to have no signs of their worm infection at all. If your cat has never been checked for worms, it’s an absolute must. You should also have a stool sample checked for any new cat brought into your home. Deworming is usually a standard part of the protocol for shelter cats, and young kittens are typically dewormed several times as they get worms from their mother’s milk and will pass them back and forth. Even if your cat has been treated for worms before, a reinfestation is possible at any time because treatment just kills the existing worms.
This is one case where you have to go to the veterinarian for help. She needs to diagnose the type (or types) of worm infesting your cat in order to prescribe the correct medication. Over-the-counter deworming medications often don’t have enough punch to knock out worms for good. No home or folk remedies have been shown to be both effective and safe enough to get the job done, either. An infestation that goes unchecked for months or even years robs your cat of vital nutrients. She will also be shedding eggs or spores and infecting other animals (and could even infect you).
Cats who go outdoors, hunt, eat raw or undercooked meat or meat products, have fleas or share quarters with a cat who has been diagnosed with worms have the highest risk of being infected and should have a stool sample checked by a veterinarian. In the case of worms, prevention is the best cure. This includes regular flea treatments. The good news is that most common worms usually aren’t dangerous, although untreated cases — especially in cats who are already ill — can be. So get your cat to the vet and rid him or her of those nasty parasites; you’ll both be happier for it!
Intestinal worms are more than just a nuisance that can cause your dog or cat discomfort – they can also pose serious health risks to your pet, you and your family. As a pet owner, the main intestinal worm species you should be aware of are roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms, and whipworm. Knowing how your pet can be exposed to these intestinal parasites is important in helping reduce the risk to yourself and your family, too.
Long, white and spaghetti-like, roundworms are common intestinal worms found in both cats and dogs.
- Symptoms: Adult dogs and cats may show no obvious signs, but puppies and kittens are more severely affected and can even die from heavy roundworm burdens. Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, poor coat condition, and young animals may display a potbelly and slow growth.
- How dogs and cats can get roundworms: Puppies can be infested in utero and puppies and kittens can also be infested through the milk. Infected pets pass roundworm eggs out through their faeces, and the eggs find their way into the soil. Pets ingest eggs for example when they are sniffing around the ground or playing with a toy in a contaminated area.
- How people can get roundworms: If people accidentally swallow these eggs, the larvae of this parasite can travel around the body causing life-threatening conditions.
Tapeworms are segmented worms that live in the small intestine of infected pets. Tapeworms can sometimes be seen in the pet’s faeces, or around the anus, resembling tiny crawling rice grains.
- Symptoms: Most infections are asymptomatic. However, they can cause irritation around the bottom, unexplained weight loss, diarrhoea and vomiting.
- How dogs and cats get tapeworms: Segments containing eggs are released from the worm and pass out in the pet’s faeces, remaining mobile for some time. Secondary hosts such as grazing animals, rodents, lizards or even flea larvae ingest the eggs. Worms mature, and pets are infected by eating the secondary host. The most common tapeworm is called the ‘flea tapeworm,’ and as its name suggests, it is contracted when pets swallow infected fleas.
- How people can get tapeworms: People become infected with tapeworms when they ingest the tapeworm eggs or accidentally swallow an infected flea. This is uncommon but can be very dangerous. For example, the hydatid tapeworm causes cysts to develop in the body of humans, even in the brain.
Hookworms are found in dogs and cats. These worms latch on to the lining of your pet’s intestine with their sharp teeth and feed on your pet’s blood.
- Symptoms: Adult animals may not show any symptoms. Symptoms are more commonly seen in younger animals and can include diarrhoea containing blood, and anaemia. This can quickly lead to death if not treated.
- How dogs and cats can get hookworms: Hookworms can be picked up if your pet eats or walks on soil containing hookworm larvae as hookworm larvae can penetrate through the skin, or if they eat another infected animal (e.g. rodent, bird). Puppies can also be infected through the milk.
- How people can get hookworms: If people walk barefoot over soil containing hookworm larvae, the larvae can burrow into the skin and cause intense itching. Larvae can also be accidentally ingested.
In Australia, whipworm infects dogs, not cats. As the name suggests, whipworm resembles a whip, with a thicker front end and a longer, thinner back end.
- Symptoms: If low numbers of worms are present, dogs may not show symptoms, but in heavy infestations the worms cause damage to the intestines, which can lead to diarrhoea containing fresh blood (bright red) and mucous and straining.
- How dogs get whipworm: Pets prone to rummaging in the soil can accidentally ingest whipworm eggs that are on the ground from another dog’s faeces.
- How people can get whipworm: Dog whipworm is not considered a zoonotic threat – in other words, there is little risk of catching this parasite by coming into contact with faeces from your pet.
How to prevent worms in your pet
Regularly worming your dog or cat is advisable, not just for the health of your pet, but to help protect you and your family from the potentially harmful effects of parasites.
The usual recommendation for adult cats and dogs is to worm them at least every three months. There are a variety of options available for worming your pets, including tablets like Drontal ® for dogs and cats and spot-on treatments such as Advocate ® for dogs and cats, and Profender ® for cats.
Which treatment should you choose?
Drontal tablets and chews for dogs are one of the most effective worming treatments on the market. They kill all of the common intestinal worms found in dogs. Drontal is available in suspension form for puppies and is also available as an ellipsoid tablet for cats, but as cat owners know, giving a tablet to a cat can be tricky!
Another option for worming your dog or cat is Advocate. Monthly treatment also controls fleas and heartworm. Profender Allwormer is also available as a top-spot treatment for cats that helps take the stress out of worming; one drop on the back of the neck kills intestinal worms commonly found in cats and lungworm. Profender can be used in cats >2.5kg.
Armed with your newfound knowledge of worms, as well as proper preventative measures, you can ensure your pet remains healthy, fit and protected from the nasty effects of intestinal worms.
If you have a new kitten or see something odd in your cat’s fecal matter, you may be wondering about worms. Worms are a parasitic organism that many cats get. The two most common kinds of worms are tapeworms and roundworms, and the symptoms of worms in cats usually is seeing tapeworm segments in the fecal material.
The first step you must take is identfying the type of worms that your cat has.
Tapeworms are long, flat worms composed of multiple segments. What you will see if your cat is infected with tapeworms are white wormlike things moving around your cat’s rectum. These are alive segments from the tapeworm that have broken off from the adult parasite. When these segments are dead, they’ll look like uncooked rice grains or sesame seeds. You may find them where your cat sleeps.
There are two different kinds of tapeworms; each kind infects cats differently. Dipylidium caninum infects cats when they swallow a flea infected with the parasite. Taenia taeniaformia infects cats when they ingest a rodent that has been infected with this kind of tapeworm.
The best way to prevent Dipylidium caninum is to keep your cat as flea free as possible. Groom your cat frequently so you’re aware of a flea infestation. Keep your cat indoors if you can to prevent a flea infestation. Products like Frontline and Advantage for Cats are great at preventing flea infestation. And without fleas, you, your cat and your family will be much happier. On the plus side, humans usually do not become infected with tapeworms from their cat–humans also need to swallow an infected flea to become infected. Symptoms for humans and pets are similar–seeing tapeworm segments in fecal material.
To prevent Taenia taeniaformia, keep your cat indoors so they can’t play and ingest wild rodents.
Treatment for tapeworms is fairly easy. An oral medication or an injection is usually all that’s needed to kill the worms and get them out of your cat’s intestinal tract.
Roundworms can be transferred to humans via fecal material and if the roundworms are in the soil your cat defecated in (wear gloves while gardening). Roundworms in humans cause an infection called visceral larva migrans. Roundworms transferred by pets usually do not go into the intestines, but into other tissues such as the heart and lungs. A common type of roundworms are heartworms; heartworms can be prevented by avoiding mosquitoes. It is very important to prevent heartworms in cats, as there is no effective treatment for feline heartworms.
Mild human roundworm infestations are usually symptom-free. In heavier human infestations, the symptoms might be fever, irritability, abdominal pain, itchy skin lesions similar to hives, coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing, and if eyes are infected, loss of vision.
Treatment for roundworms is fairly easy as well. A pill normally works to take care of roundworms. Many vets recommend deworming kittens every couple of weeks whether or not you actually see worms, just to be on the safe side.
To prevent roundworm infection when your cat is older, don’t let them hunt birds and rodents. Isolate your cat from kittens and strays to prevent reinfection. Consider keeping your cat indoors to prevent them from hunting and eating rodents and birds without you being aware of it.
These are the most common types of worms in cats.
If your cat is infected with worms, you will probably have to give them a pill to kill the infestation. The best way to learn how to give your cat a pill is to have your vet, or a veterinarian technician show you. But the following are a few tips on how to give your cat a pill.
- Tilt your cat’s head backwards, and using the forefinger of the other hand, open the lower jaw, and place the pill as far back into the mouth as you can.
- Hold your cat’s head in a normal position and stroke the throat until the pill is swallowed.
- Squirting a few millimeters of water into your cat’s mouth using a plastic syringe may help your cat swallow the pill.
- You can try to hide a pill in your cat’s favorite food, but most cats will eat around the pill and then spit it back out.
- When giving your cat a pill, move fast and give your cat lots of love (if they’ll accept it) afterwards.
Worms in your pet cat are dangerous for your pet’s health and for your family as well. It is treatable, although it may take several bouts of treatment before the problem is eliminated. Tapeworms, roundworms, hookworms and whipworms are some of the common feline parasites. The best course of action is to prevent an infestation. Here’s what you can do,
- Keep you cat clean. Cats generally clean themselves, but make sure that it is free of lice and ticks. You may even take you cat to be groomed.
- Regularly clean and sanitize the kitty litter box. Don’t let the old kitty litter sit for several days when you know it needs changing. Worms thrive in fecal matter and urine so it’s best to rid of it right away. Before you add new litter, wash the box or bin with warm soapy water and sanitize properly. Also, if you have a yard, keep the area clean since cats may also get worms from feces and urine on the soil.
- Bring your cat to the vet regularly for check ups. A physical examination of your cat should be done. Fecal samples may also be tested. If you have other animals, it’s best to have them checked as well, to avoid cross contamination.
- Train your car not to hunt rodents and birds, as this is a common way for a worm infestation to begin. Make your cat eat cooked or frozen fish instead.
Keep your cat away from other animals. It’s not wise that your pet cat associates with other neighborhood cats and dogs to lower the risk of infection. Worms are highly contagious so it’s best to isolate your pet in case it is diagnosed with worms. Keep children away from the cat during the treatment time.
After handling your pet, make sure you protect yourself and wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water.
A sick pet is the absolute treacherous pain any cat owner can go through. Everything is done to make them feel better, but they’re still ill.
Tapeworms are the worst illnesses for cats to contract. These tiny microscopic worms cause a lot of harm in your cat’s insides. A tapeworm’s main job is to lodge themselves onto the walls of the cat’s intestine and stay there as far as they wish, even years!
That gives just Goosebumps. Surely there has to be a hint or way to prevent these creatures from impacting our pets intestines and worsening their health. Lucky for you, this article has six different useful ideas on how to get rid of tapeworms in cats.
Table of Contents
The Definition of a Tapeworm
Starting as larvae, and then hatching into an adult worm that can reach the span of either 4 inches or even a length of 12-18 inches! Disgusting!
There are two types of tapeworms: the Dipylidium Caninum and Echinococcus. Echinococcus can be more harmful than the other. It will enlarge cysts in the liver, lungs, or other organs in a Cat’s system.
What are the Symptoms?
It may not be the job you want to do, but check your cat’s faces. You can easily see the worms as tiny white specks wiggling around, possibly even decapitated. Don’t be relieved. Those parasites are still inside your cat.
Also, you must check out if your cat is vomiting or has diarrheal issues. If you notice that your cat is licking around the edges of its bottom too often, then it’s time for a check-up.
These worms can cause your cat to lose weight if they’re around for long periods due to the tapeworms taking in their needed nutrients. And they’ll make your cat all the more uncomfortable. And itchy, too.
How Do Cats Get Tapeworms?
The primary cause for cats to contract tapeworms is due to pesky fleas. Fleas carry tapeworm larvae. Once digested, caterpillars will venture to the cat’s intestine, latch on, and then begin to grow in size.
Fleas are not only inside your home, but they also occupy themselves in boarding kennels, at the groomers, in pet stores, or even veterinarian clinics. Outside is the most common place for your cat to get fleas. It’s where they gladly pay out most of their time.
How to Get Rid of Tapeworms?
It’s crucial to see the vet before going through with any treatments. Bring a feces sample for the vet to experiment.
Here is where plans for treatment come into play.
Your vet will recommend medications such as injections or even oral medication also called ‘dewormers.’ Medication will help dissolve worms in the intestines. No adverse side effects will harm your cat.
Doctors recommend as much medication as possible. It’s unknown how many doses you may need for fast recoveries. Excessive medication could end up messing up your cat’s health even more.
Another tip is to give your cat ‘flea and tick preventive medication’ throughout the year. Home Remedies will also save enough amount of money if you stick with them first.
2. Home Remedy Secrets
Pumpkin Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are full of enriching vitamins that can kill larvae and adult tapeworms. For at least a week, add a tablespoon of crushed pumpkin seeds
Parsley Water: Tea made out of parsley water will help your cat’s digestive system. Steam fresh parsley in a bowl of water and then add 1/2 tablespoon of the cooled tea into your cat’s water dish for the next ten days.
3. Clean Your Cat’s Litter-box
It’s not the most pleasant of all chores, but someone needs to get it done. The litter box contains a multitude of germs and risks of tapeworms. Dispose of all those soiled litter quickly and regularly. Your cat will well appreciate you for giving their litter box a needed scrub. It’s not just home to parasites, but it can get pretty sticky.
4. Reduce Outside Adventures
Being the boss is puzzling at times. The outside world contains a micro world of tapeworm larvae. In the end, your cat will thank you. That’s where they pick up the most risk for tapeworms. You may even have to turn your ordinarily outside cat into an indoor cat just for their safety. Use sprays, traps, or other methods in your home or yard.
Other critters such as rabbits or rodents also carry these fleas. Ingesting a mouse with worms is a high risk as eggs for worms will hatch and will make a home inside your cat’s intestines. Therefore the more time your cat spends around these critters, the more increase in risk they have in the form of worms.
5. Flea Prevention
Fleas are the ultimate cause for a cat’s tapeworm as they harbor the larvae right in their skin. Buy flea control treatments and regularly use around the house. By using insect growth regulators and also putting your cat on a monthly flea product, it will kill off the larvae and prevent any possible harm from worms.
6. Keep Your Cat from Getting Affected!
As the owner, it’s your job to prevent your beloved pet from contracted tapeworms in the first place. Follow through with this list of preventions and your cat will lead a healthy life.
Caution. Tapeworms are transmittable. They’re not contagious like a cold, but keep a close watch for fleas. Dogs can also contract tapeworms by ingesting them in the same way as cats. And in rare cases, humans, too!
Children are the most at risk of developing tapeworms. The symptoms are mild, but it’s best to get the proper aid as soon as possible. Make sure that your children regularly wash their hands after playing with the family cat. Don’t ever touch pet’s feces with your hands. That’s how they ingest tapeworms.
Tapeworms are never fun. And now you know their adverse effects on health. That’s why it’s the best option to prevent cats from contracting tapeworms. Be a good pet parent.
Pet Health and Safety • PetPartners • Tuesday, May 19, 2020
Worms are something most dog owners have to contend with at some point. With many people expressing concern about the side effects of conventional worming products, it’s good to know that there are a number of natural alternatives that can treat and prevent these pesky parasites in your canine companion.
1. Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin seeds are an extremely effective deworming agent because they contain an amino acid called cucurbitacin. This paralyzes the worms making them easily eliminated from the intestine. They can be fed whole as a treat or you can grind them into a fine powder and add to Fido’s food. One teaspoon of raw pumpkin seeds (not the salted savory snack ones) per 10lbs of body weight twice a day should do the trick.
These common orange vegetables are a great source of vitamin A and believe it or not, can get rid of worms in our canine companions. Coarsely chopped carrots scrape the walls of the stomach and gut as they are digested, removing the mucus and any parasites that are within it. Carrots can be fed as a tasty treat or included at meal times they are perfectly safe, boost the immune system and are an excellent source of nutrients for your pet.
Dried coconut is a vermifuge, meaning it can help eliminate worms from the body. Sprinkle on food, giving 1 tsp for small dogs, 2 tsp for medium dogs and 1 tbsp for large breeds. Coconut oil, when fed regularly, can also rid your pooch of internal parasites as well as having many other health benefits
4. Apple Cider Vinegar
Over the last few years we have all become aware of the health benefits of apple cider vinegar but did you know this fermented apple cider can also work as an effective worm treatment for our four-legged friends. It works because unlike other vinegar it increases the alkaline levels in the dog’s intestines making it inhospitable for parasites and worms. Add 1/4-1 teaspoon of raw organic ACV to your dog’s water every day you may also notice an improvement in coat condition along with several other health benefits.
Turmeric has long been considered a superfood and has been used for generations to boost the immune system and for its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. It contains 4 compounds that can help get rid of worms and is also able to repair the damage these pesky parasites cause to the intestine, resulting in a healthier gut. Because the curcumin in turmeric can be hard for dogs to absorb if given along, we suggust combining it with a healthy oil such as coconut oil to create a paste to feed your pup.
Chamomile is renowned for its soothing properties which means it can help with any bloating, or inflammation caused by internal parasites. Along with being able to get rid of both roundworms and whipworms. It works best when given as a tincture which can be bought relatively cheaply online or in health food stores. The recommended dose is 0,25 ml – 0.50 ml per 20 lbs of your dog’s weight and repeat twice a day for 2 weeks.
Prepare for the Unexpected
Treating and preventing worms the natural way is a great start to ensuring your pup stays healthy, but you should still schedule an annual vet visit where heartworm and parasite testing can be conducted, along with deworming if needed. Enrolling your dog in pet insurance with wellness coverage means you can receive reimbursement towards preventative treatments and your annual veterinary visit! Get a quote today.
Tapeworms in cats are intestinal parasites that have the potential to make kitties sick. But what are the signs of tapeworms in cats? How would you know if your cat is suffering? Don’t bug out: We’re here to help!
To truly understand tapeworms in cats, pet parents first need to understand what tapeworms are and what tricks they have up their (metaphorical) sleeve when it comes to infesting your cat. Let’s get to it!
What Are Tapeworms
Tapeworms are long, white and flat segmented worms that can live in the small intestines of cats and dogs. They contain both male and female reproductive organs and use their hook-like mouth parts to anchor to the inside of the intestinal wall. There are three types of tapeworms that can infect felines:
All three typically use other animals, called an intermediate host, to enter the cat.
Taenia and Echinococcus tapeworms can infect wild rodents and rabbits, in addition to house pets. When cats eat these infected prey animals, the parasite then infects the cat. But the most common tapeworm found in pet cats is Dipylidium or the “flea tapeworm.”
Illustration by Chewy Studios
Dipylidium Tapeworm Lifecycle
This intestinal parasite has earned its “flea tapeworm” moniker because it uses a flea as an intermediate host to get into your pet.
As seen in the illustration above, the cycle of infection starts when segmented tapeworm egg packets, called proglottids, are consumed by flea larvae (pre-adult fleas) either outside or by existing fleas in the home. These tiny flea larvae chew into the tapeworm egg case and consume the microscopic ova.
These eggs then hatch inside the flea larvae’s body and hide there through the larvae’s development into a blood-sucking adult flea. When the infected adult flea jumps onto your cat, it can then be consumed during your kitty’s grooming.
Once swallowed, the flea is digested, and the tapeworm larvae is released unharmed where it can then attach to the intestines. At this point, it takes about four weeks to grow into a reproducing adult tapeworm, which can measure anywhere from 6 to 23 inches and produce the segmented egg packets. These segments contain up to 20 microscopic eggs and exit the cat’s body through their feces. Once released into the environment, they become ingested by flea larvae, and the cycle starts all over again.
Tapeworm Symptoms in Cats
Most cats do not show signs of illness from tapeworm infections. Cats who have heavy flea infestations are more likely to end up with large amounts of tapeworms in their intestines, and there is potential for these patients to experience the following signs of tapeworms in cats:
- Vomiting (due to adult tapeworms becoming detached from the small intestinal wall and migrating to the stomach)
- Weight loss
- Poor appetite
You may also spot the tapeworm egg segments in your cat’s litterbox or near their anus. Pale yellow and mobile, the Dipylidium proglottids come out with the cat’s feces, but the segments can also migrate from your cat’s anus without the presence of stool. They are about a quarter of an inch long when fresh and stretched out, but begin to dry after leaving the body and become more difficult to see. When dry, they somewhat resemble sesame seeds. Fresh or dry segments can occasionally be seen stuck to the fur around the anus or moving on the surface of fresh feces.
Tapeworm segments migrating to the anal area may also cause excessive anal itching which can lead to butt scooting or constant licking of the anal area.
Rarely, a condition called Haw’s syndrome may be associated with heavy tapeworm presence in cats and cause prolapse in the third eyelids (nictitating membranes). This syndrome can occur in severely dehydrated cats, but has also been associated with significant disease of the stomach and intestines due to parasites (such as tapeworms), inflammatory bowel disease, intestinal cancer and viral enteritis. However, the absence of Haw’s syndrome does not rule out intestinal parasite infection or other intestinal disease.
What makes it so difficult to diagnose tapeworms in cats is that kitties are very fastidious groomers. Cats can clean the evidence from their backsides and bury their stool in the litterbox before anyone gets a chance to see the evidence of infection. And fecal flotations performed by your veterinarian can also come up short when trying to detect tapeworm infection due to the intermittent shedding of the egg-containing segments.
If your veterinarian finds fleas or even just the feces of fleas (aka “flea dirt”) on your cat, they will likely recommend deworming for tapeworms due to the high risk of an existing infection.
How to Treat Tapeworms in Cats
The most effective medication for killing tapeworms in cats is praziquantel. It is the only drug that is effective against all species of tapeworm, and comes in tablet, injectable and topical forms.
Bayer Pharmaceutical offers a non-prescription praziquantel tablet, Bayer Tapeworm Dewormer Tablets for Cats, as well as a prescription formula called Bayer Drontal Tablets for Cats that’s also designed to attack hookworms and roundworms. Bayer also offers a praziquantel injection called Bayer Droncit that can be administered by a veterinarian.
While one dose is considered effective to kill adult tapeworms, it is recommended to administer a second dose about two weeks later to kill any remaining or newly introduced tapeworms. Effective flea control must also be used simultaneously to clear and prevent reinfection with Dipylidium worms.
How to Prevent Tapeworms in Cats
As the old saying goes, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound cure.” That certainly holds true when it comes to tapeworm infections. Vigilant and effective flea control for your cat is the first step in preventing infection from the flea tapeworm, Dipylidium, and cats who go outside will often hunt and consume prey, which serve as intermediate hosts for the other species of tapeworms. These cats should see their vet every three months for intestinal parasite testing and deworming whether symptoms are present or not.
- Pet Advice for Dogs
- How to treat and prevent worms in your pet
Worms are a common problem for cats and dogs – especially young kittens and puppies. The nasty parasites live inside their stomach and intestines – getting first dibs on the nutrients and goodness in their food.
Worms come in many shapes and sizes, from the large, stringy roundworm to the tiny hookworm. The two most prevalent are the tapeworm and roundworm.
Tapeworms develop inside fleas that have eaten tapeworm eggs, which the pet then swallows when grooming. Widespread in your pet’s environment, they can grow up to half a metre long and deprive your pet of valuable nutrients from their ideal spot in the intestinal tract.
Roundworms live in the stomach and are contracted when, via an innocent sniff or accidental tread, your pet ingests soil contaminated with faeces from another cat or dog. These wriggling pests have thick, sticky shells and can survive in your garden for up to four years!
Other types of worms, the hookworm and whipworm, are less common but equally as harmful. Hookworms are microscopic, but don’t let their size fool you – they infest in the hundreds or thousands and live off your pet’s blood supply. Whipworms are found in dogs, where they burrow into the bowel wall causing diarrhea.
Many pet owners think their pet is worm-free because they can’t see wriggling white bits, but worms are resourceful little pests – they try hard to stay hidden inside their host as long as possible to feed and survive.
The effects of worms on your pet’s health can be extreme. They are capable of causing diarrhoea, coughing, vomiting, a weakened immune system, skin diseases, stunted growth and a dull coat. Look out for white segments (that look like grains of rice) in your pet’s faeces or attached to the anal area, which is a sign of a tapeworm infection. In the case of roundworms, the eggs are too small to be visible, and sometimes there are no noticeable symptoms at all. However, infected pets may drag their rear-end along the floor or suffer from vomiting, constipation, anaemia, weight gain/loss, or hyperactivity.
Wipe out worms
With the possibility of so many unwelcome guests wreaking havoc on your pet’s health, regular worming is essential. Starting your worming routine early in your pet’s life is important, as kittens and puppies may well have worms from birth. With a partial immunity developing with age, mothers often pass on worms through the placenta or their milk. To help combat this, worm your pregnant pet towards the end of her pregnancy and shortly after birth, but always ask your vet to recommend a product for pregnant or nursing pets. Kittens and puppies should be wormed fortnightly from two weeks of age, until reaching 12 weeks, then monthly until the age of six months. From then, worming programmes will depend on different cases, but vets recommend worming every three months using a product that kills all types of worms. And don’t forget, fleas are an important part of the tapeworm’s lifecycle, so one of the most effective worm prevention methods is to get rid of this pesky little biter!
There are other ways to lessen the incidence of worms in your pets. Wash their bedding or kennel regularly; remove excrement promptly from the garden or litter tray; and discourage hunting or the eating of rodents.
Keep ’em worm-free
While worms can pose a serious health problem for your pet, they can be kept in check. Work with your vet to maintain a prevention program to keep your pet healthy and your family safe. Your kittens and puppies may not be so roly-poly, but they will be happier and healthier.
What about us?
Humans are not immune to worms, but the risk of infection is minimal if simple hygiene practices are followed along with regular pet worming. If you suspect that your pet has worms it is a good idea to treat the human family as well, especially if you have children. With their inquisitive nature, children tend to be more susceptible, so it is important to teach them good hygiene practices like washing hands after playing with pets and before meals. It is also sensible not to let your pet lick your face or share your pillow.
Animals great and small
Almost all animals can get worms and it is extremely important to treat all your pets at the same time to prevent reinfection. Horses are particularly prone to worms as they eat the grass on which they defecate. Therefore, they should be wormed as often as every six weeks. Worm your pet bird three times a year, and your rabbit, guinea pig and other small animals twice a year.
Despite its name, Ringworm in cats is not a parasitic worm. It is fungal infection that is easily passed to dogs and humans. Ringworm commonly affects cats of all ages and will cure itself. Because it is infectious, it’s important to know how it is transmitted, what causes the fungal infection and common treatments.
Types of Ringworm Fungus
Ringworm is caused by three fungi:
Fungus spores cling to animals, furniture, toys, clothing, brushes and their bedding and thrive in warm, humid climates. Because spores live for two years, it’s important to wash everything a cat is in contact with after ringworm is discovered.
Ringworm in Cats Spreads Easily
A cat with ringworm is contagious. If a human or other animal touches something an infected cat laid on or rubbed against, the spores will transfer to the new host.
Most people and animals are able to fight off the fungal infection naturally. A number of other people and animals are at risk for contracting the fungal infection. These higher-risk groups include:
Impaired immune system
How Ringworm in Cats Looks
Ringworm in cats generally leads to small, hairless patches of rough, bumpy skin. They usually start out very small and grow in size. Some cats will itch them excessively causing scabbing and oozing.
Ringworm patches usually are round, but this is not always a certainty. They are most commonly located on the face, lips and tail. Some cats get ringworm fungus in their nails causing the nails to grow unevenly or in odd shapes.
Preventing Ringworm in Cats
To keep your cat free of ringworm, it’s best to keep him indoors. If you keep your healthy cat indoors all the time, you eliminate the risk of him contacting ringworm from another cat.
If your cat must go outdoors, check him daily for lesions. Try to keep your cat from coming into contact with stray cats. Strays tend to have a higher risk for ringworm because they often lack proper nutrition.
If you bring home a new pet, make sure the cat or dog does not have any lesions on any part of his body. Ask for a vet check before bringing your pet home to make sure there are no health issues.
Clean your home of dust and animal hair daily. Swiffer mops, vacuums and dust rags used to collect dust and spores work effectively. If your furnace blows hot air, vacuum out the vents and have your air filter in your furnace changed.
Spray bedding with a mixture of water and bleach (a one-part to ten-part mix). Clean kennels, combs, brushes and any animal clothing too.
Certain breeds have a higher susceptibility for getting ringworm. Asian breeds, particularly Himalayans and Persians, are susceptible to ringworm infections. Be cautious about bringing these breeds home.
If you have to board your cat in a kennel for trips, check the kennel out first. Before boarding your pet, ask about their sanitizing practices. Also ask for client recommendations. Online local directories, often allow user reviews.
by Quentin Coleman
Worms are more dangerous for kittens than adult cats.
If you cringe at the thought of your kitty having worms, you are certainly not alone. Intestinal parasites are pretty gross, but they can be even more frustrating to treat. Without a professional diagnosis and prescription from a vet, your cat could be stuck with worms for a long time.
If you think your cat has worms because you saw one in the litter box, then he probably has roundworms or tapeworms. Roundworms are more prevalent than any other intestinal parasite in cats, according to The Winn Feline Foundation. Roundworms are a little more disturbing to see since entire living worms can appear in your pet’s stool. Tapeworms tend to break into inanimate segments that look like grains of rice. Cats can also get other types of worms, including whipworms, hookworms and stomach worms. These worms tend to be smaller and some are practically microscopic, so you may never see them at all. Ask your vet what type of medication specifically targets the type of worms your cat has. Some dewormers are only effective against either roundworms or tapeworms, but not both.
Cause of Infestation
No matter how much medicine you give your cat, you’ll never get rid of his worms unless you prevent him from getting reinfected. Outdoor cats have a much higher chance of getting parasites. Eating mice, squirrels and other wild animals exposes your cats to numerous diseases and parasites, including worms. Unlike most other intestinal parasites, tapeworms can only get into your cat through fleas. The only way for your cat to get them is by swallowing an infested flea. Keeping fleas off your cat is all you need to do to prevent tapeworms.
Humans can actually catch roundworms, tapeworms and other parasites from cats. Wash your hands after petting or holding your kitty and keep children away until your cat is clean of worms. You should also keep your cat isolated from your other pets. Your dog could be reinfecting your cat, making treatment pointless. Limit your cat’s time outdoors, especially during spring and summer. Rodents and birds are more active in warmer weather. Clean your kitty’s litter box every day until he’s recovered. Wash clothes, cat beds and blankets that your kitty likes to sleep on to kill any parasite eggs left on the fabric.
Contact your vet and ask him for advice. He may ask you to bring your cat in to verify the type of worm your cat has. Non-prescription worming products and home remedies may be effective sometimes, but your kitty needs professional treatment if his worms don’t go away after a few weeks. Adult cats often show few symptoms when they have worms and some wild felines harbor worms for their entire life. Give your cat prescription medication exactly as your vet instructs you. Skipping a dose can mess up the whole process.
It goes without saying that your pet is part of your family. More than likely, you probably consider your dog or your cat to be like one of your kiddos вЂ” except furrier. So it might come as a surprise to learn that during a snuggle sesh, something could happen that might make your child sick. ThatвЂ™s right, when your pet serves up those sweet sloppy kisses, he might also pass on something more sinister (and frankly, gross) to your kids, too вЂ” worms. If youвЂ™re worried about how kids get worms, read on to find out how to prevent this problem from happening.
Toxocariasis (or more commonly known as worms) is an infection that people can get from their dogs or cats. It comes from worms that live in your petвЂ™s intestines and then are passed on to pet owners, Kids Health reported. вЂњDogs and cats вЂ” especially puppies and kittens вЂ” are commonly infected with roundworms and hookworms unless they are on an effective deworming protocol,вЂќ Dr. Jennifer Coates, DVM, tells Romper. вЂњBoth of these intestinal parasites shed eggs in the petвЂ™s feces that contaminate the environment.вЂќ
So the question is: how do people actually get worms? Well, it all comes down to dirt. Kids can come into contact with the infected eggs via dirt or other tainted materials, like sand in a sandbox. But more often than not, itвЂ™s probably your butt-licking dog or cat thatвЂ™s to blame. вЂњKids get worms from playing with a dog who has been licking their butt,вЂќ Dr. Sara Ochoa, DVM, a veterinarian in Texas, tells Romper. вЂњThe dog may lick the childвЂ™s hands or lick their face, transferring these nasty parasite eggs to your kids.вЂќ
Obvs, pet owners of all ages have a greater chance of being exposed to Toxocariasis, but children are especially at risk for getting worms. вЂњKids are more likely to put their dirty hands in their mouths before washing them, so they are usually more susceptible,вЂќ Dr. Alison Mitzner, a board certified pediatrician, tells Romper. Once the infected eggs enter a personвЂ™s body, the larvae can migrate to other organs in the body, like the lungs, liver, heart, or even the brain, Kids Health also reported. Although the larvae wonвЂ™t actually evolve into worms in a human being, they can still do damage to the body.
If the idea of infected larvae isnвЂ™t enough to make your skin crawl, if you or your child get worms, the symptoms might not always be immediately apparent. Depending on the severity of the infection, your child might get a fever, have belly pain, have a loss of appetite, and experience coughing and wheezing, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported. More severe symptoms enlarged lymph nodes and liver, a hive-like rash, and vision problems.
If your child does develop symptoms, you should take them to their pediatrician immediately for a diagnosis and treatment. вЂњA doctor can determine if a patient has been infected by evaluating symptoms and performing tests, such as a tape test, a blood test, or even collect stool samples,вЂќ Dr. Mitzner says. вЂњAnd because it can spread so easily within the family, your pediatrician will treat the child and all in the family at the same time.вЂќ Your child might be treated with anti-parasitic medication to kill the larvae, and in serious cases affecting the eye or other organs, a steroid might be prescribed.
Although poop happens, you can take steps to prevent your child from getting worms in the first place. вЂњAll dogs and cats should be on a deworming plan to protect their own health as well as to reduce the chances of parasite transmission to people and other pets,вЂќ advises Dr. Coates. вЂњPicking up pet feces promptly is also important.вЂќ And as for your own kids, you should always make sure that they wash their hands after playing with the family pet. вЂњGood thorough and frequent hand washing is the best way to prevent worms and many other infections!вЂќ Dr. Mitzner adds.
So be sure to keep your kidвЂ™s hands clean and pick up your pet’s poop right away. That way, youвЂ™ll hopefully worm yourself out of a potentially parasitic situation with your pet.
by Sandra Ketcham
Worm prevention starts early in life.
Worms are more than just gross; they can severely affect the health and well-being of your kitten. Because preventing worms is easier and safer than treating them, it’s essential to protect your kitten from roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms, and other dangerous parasites starting early in her life.
Treat adult cats in your household for worm infections to prevent their passing worms to your kitten. If your adult cat is pregnant, discuss medication options with your veterinarian.
Bring your newly adopted or recently born kitten to the veterinarian for a full examination. Your vet will check for evidence of existing worms and will make certain your kitty has no health conditions that may interfere with a worm preventative.
Speak with your veterinarian about whether or not your kitten should continue nursing if the mother cat is infected with roundworms. These worms are transmissible through milk during nursing, according to the ASPCA.
Clean the litter boxes in your home frequently. Not only will your house smell better, but your kitten’s chances of being infected with worms will decrease. Worms and eggs can spread through contact with feces or contaminated litter boxes.
Keep your home and yard free of rodents, dead birds and other pests. These animals carry roundworms, tapeworms and lungworms, and your kitten may become infected if she ingests one of these pests.
Watch your kitten to ensure she is not eating the feces of other cats or animals. Many worms are transmissible via ingestion of feces, including hookworms. Hookworms can cause potentially fatal anemia in kittens.
Check your yard for snails and slugs, two garden pests known to carry lungworms. Snails and slugs are attractive prey to young kittens who are learning to hunt.
Treat your home, yard and animals for fleas. Fleas may act as hosts to some worms and transmit the parasites when biting your kitten, or when your kitten swallows them during grooming. The ASPCA recommends keeping kittens indoors to reduce their exposure to fleas, rodents and other hazards.
Use a worm preventative on your kitten as soon as she is old enough. Many parasite control products can be used as early as six weeks of age.
Canine worms can cause a variety of health problems in dogs. Here youвЂ™ll find a brief description of the most common types of worms in dogs, with links to in-depth articles on how these worms can infect your dog and what you can do to prevent and treat them.
Usually spread in feces or during pregnancy or nursing, the roundworm causes a serious infection in dogs and puppies. The roundworm eats the food of its host and may cause diarrhea and other symptoms. In puppies, roundworms can be fatal. Prescription and over-the-counter deworming products for dogs are very effective. If people contract roundworms, their symptoms can be even more serious than those in dogs. Read the full article.
Living mainly in the small intestine, hookworms suck the blood of their hosts. Puppies can become infected from their mothers. Adult dogs can be infected through their skin or when cleaning themselves. They can also be infected by eating another animalВ that is infected. Infection causes weakness and malnutrition and can lead to death in puppies. Two rounds of deworming medication are usually effective, but a puppy may need other treatment, as well. Humans can also become infected with hookworms from unwashed vegetables or by walking barefoot on sand and soil. Read the full article.
Heartworms are spread to dogs through mosquito bites. Up to 14 inches long, a heartworm lives in the heart and the arteries that carry blood from the heart to the lungs. Heartworms affect how the heart functions and how blood clots and is likely to cause death if untreated. Monthly heartworm preventives are effective. If infected, your dog may cough, have trouble breathing, and experience other symptoms. Treatment may involve two or three injections of arsenic-based drugs, followed by at least a month of rest. Read the full article.
Whipworms live in the area where the small and large intestines meet. Here, they suck the blood of their hosts. Dogs can pick them up from contaminated soil or by grooming. Whipworms can be quite serious and cause bloody diarrhea when there are large numbers embed in the intestine. Some heartworm preventives are effective against whipworms, and an oral dewormer is effective at eliminating whipworms. Read the full article.
Dogs get tapeworms from licking themselves and swallowing fleas, which carry them. Tapeworms absorb some of the dogвЂ™s nutrients from the intestine where they attach. The tapeworm is made up of small segments, each about the size of a grain of rice. These are passed in feces and can sometimes be seen around the dogвЂ™s anus. An injection or tablet can kill tapeworms. Humans can also get tapeworms, but people don’t get them from an infected pet. Read the full article.
Despite its name, ringworm is not a worm at all. It is a skin infection caused by a fungus. In dogs, ringworm often presents as a dry, gray, scaly patch, although it may cause no symptoms at all. In people, it forms a round, red lesion with a ring-like appearance. Dogs pick up ringworm when their skin comes into contact with the spores of the fungus. Spores are commonly found in the soil or on cats. The spores can be present on a cat even when it shows no symptoms. People can catch it by touching an infected pet. Treatment for ringworm in dogs may involve medicated dips, shampoos, or ointments. Your dog may also need oral medication for one to two months. You may need to take other measures to clear ringworm from the environment or prevent its spread. Read the full article.
Veterinary Information Network: ”Ringworm FAQ;” ”Roundworms: Dogs & Puppies;” ”Hookworms;” ”Heartworm: The Parasite;” ”Heartworm Treatment;” ”Whipworms;” and ”Tapeworms.”
Veterinary Information Network. вЂњHookworms.вЂќ
Veterinary Information Network. вЂњHeartworm: The Parasite.вЂќ
Veterinary Information Network. вЂњHeartworm Treatment.вЂќ
Veterinary Information Network. вЂњWhipworms.вЂќ
Veterinary Information Network. вЂњTapeworms.вЂќ
Does your cat have roundworms? Here’s everything you need to know about how to prevent the common, easily treated disease from spreading to your other pets and the rest of your family.
Did you know that roundworms can be passed on from your cat to your other pets, or even your kids? While this is a scary thought, there is no need to panic, as there are many preventative measures you can take to protect your entire family from this common, easily treated disease. Here’s everything you need to know about roundworms in cats.
How Do Cats Get Roundworms?
Roundworms are intestinal parasites that can grow to be six inches long. These pesky parasites can cause illness, which can be potentially fatal in kittens or older cats. If an infected cat gives birth to kittens, those kittens can be infected before they are even born, explains Dr. Marcia Landefeld, a veterinarian at the Feline Veterinary Hospital in Long Island, New York.
Cats can also get roundworms by ingesting or coming into contact with the stool of infected animals, she adds. “This occurs when animals share litter boxes with infected cats or go outside and step in the feces of infected animals. This is how humans can get it, as well.” Your cat can also get roundworms from eating mice, cockroaches or birds, says Dr. Elizabeth McKinstry, a veterinarian in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania.
What Are the Symptoms of Roundworms in Cats?
While many cats infected with roundworms remain asymptomatic, others will display a variety of symptoms, including malnourishment, vomiting and diarrhea. You may also find that your cat has a potbelly, dull coat and generally unkempt appearance.
In addition, your cat may experience an upset stomach and a decrease in appetite. Lastly, as roundworms swim freely throughout your cat’s intestine, they may be visible in your pet’s stool. Dogs infected with roundworms typically display the same types of symptoms, so if all of your pets seem to be under the weather, this insidious parasite may be the culprit.
What Can You Do to Prevent Your Cat From Getting Roundworms?
According to Dr. McKinstry, it is incredibly common for kittens to be born with the parasite, because as larvae, roundworms are able to travel through the placenta and mammary glands. As such, deworming is essential in kittens. In an effort to ensure that immature worms and roundworm eggs are destroyed, you should deworm your cat multiple times. And, if you have an outdoor cat, you should administer a deworming medication, such as an anthelmintic, on a regular basis.
Due to the contagious nature of this parasite, all cats should be regularly tested for roundworms as a precautionary measure, and those that go outdoors should be tested several times a year. In fact, “the best way to prevent roundworms is to keep your cat indoors,” says Dr. Landefeld.
If you’re worried that your cat might have roundworms, you should bring her to the veterinarian, who can use a stool sample to make a diagnosis. According to Dr. Landefeld, your vet might prescribe topical products, such as Revolution, Advantage Multi and Profender, as ancillary treatments.
What Can You Do to Prevent the Rest of Your Family From Getting Roundworms?
Clearly, the best way to prevent the spread of roundworms is to try to prevent your cat from becoming infected in the first place. But there are a variety of steps you can take to protect your family if you do have an infected kitty in the house.
“Infection is common in children, who often put things in their mouths and don’t wash their hands enough,” says Dr. Landefeld. As such, Dr. Landefeld recommends that your whole family and the pet sitter engage in thorough hand washing throughout the day, especially after cleaning your cat’s litter box.
You’ll also want to clean the touch points in your home as often as possible. For instance, “if your cat has a habit of jumping up onto surfaces like counter tops where you prepare meals, make sure to wipe them down with a strong cleanser prior to food preparation,” says Dr. McKinstry. Another preventative measure you can take is to keep your pets and children out of areas where other animals may relieve themselves, such as deep-wooded forests or even uncovered sandboxes in the park.
Now that you know how to treat roundworms in cats, keep your kitty in top shape by learning about Cats and Heartworm Disease.
Corey Kagan Whelan is a freelance writer living in New York. She loves both cats and dogs, and so her household has always included a couple of each.
If you’re looking for a home remedy or natural alternative to rid your cat of worms – using turmeric for cats with worms is a safe and effective option that may just be the cure you’re looking for.
Turmeric is a powerful spice. It has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties and is great for the immune system, joints, and digestive system.
It has a wide range of healing benefits for humans, but let’s take a look at how to use it to help kill worms and intestinal parasites in cats.
Why Use Turmeric for Worms in Cats?
There are a number of reasons why people decide to try turmeric over the more traditional medicines that a vet will prescribe.
Maybe you just prefer natural solutions where available, the medicines are too expensive, they aren’t working, or you want to use turmeric as well as medicines to make sure you kill all the worms.
Worms are horrible for cats. Not only do they cause them some serious discomfort, if left untreated they can lead on to some serious health issues,
Giving your can some turmeric is a safe way to help kill worms. I’ve done it on a couple of occasions and seen the results for myself.
Symptoms of Worms in Cats
There are different types of worms, and cats can be affected differently, however, here are some of the general symptoms to look out for if you think your cat has worms:
- Blood in their stool
- Bloating and swollen tummy
- Constipation (Check out this post how to help relieve constipation)
- Issues breathing such as wheezing, coughing, etc
- Seeing worms in their stool
- Sudden loss of weight (despite having a huge appetite)
Different Types of Worms Cats Can Have
Although people use the general term ‘worms’ when cats have worms, there are actually a few different types of worms that cats have.
There are some differences in how the worms behave, the effects they have on cats, and how a vet would advise treating them.
While you should always get a vet to confirm the type of worm your cat has, here are the most likely types for your reference:
Heartworms – These are one of the most dangerous forms of worm, but also the least common, fortunately. The most common way a cat gets Heartworms is from a mosquito bite.
Hookworms – Although much more common in dogs, cats can get Hookworms via skin contact or ingestion.
Lungworms – As the name suggests, Lungworms make their way to a cat’s lungs and cause them serious breathing issues among other symptoms.
Roundworms – These little parasites are the most common type of worm in cats. Not a serious problem in most instances once you’ve identified them.
Tapeworms – These are also fairly common and usually come as a result of ingesting fleas.
What Are Worms in Cats That Look like Rice?
One of the first signs a cat has worms for a lot of cat owners is seeing what looks like rice either around their read end, in their bedding, or their stool.
I know it’s a gross way to think about it comparing worms to rice. But when a cat has tapeworms they will shed pieces of the worms and it does look like rice.
If you’re seeing small white segments in any of the places I mentioned above, it’s almost certainly tapeworms.
You should always get a professional opinion from your vet though.
How to Give Your Cat Turmeric for Worms
There are two ways to incorporate turmeric into your cat’s diet;
- One is to add some turmeric to their food.
- The other is to use a turmeric supplement.
If you’re going to use turmeric in a power form like the one below, the main issue is the smell and taste.
Some cats will be wise to what you’re up to and if they don’t like the smell or taste of turmeric they will not eat it.
As cat owners, we all know how stubborn cats can be, so if your cat won’t eat the powder I recommend trying the supplement below.
A lot of cats will either be unaware or just want to eat their food so much that they will eat it, however.
You should use no more than ¼ tsp of turmeric per day. Mix it into some wet food most cats will eat it up without a problem.
While not as effective in my experience, curcumin supplements are designed to promote healthy digestion, defense against worms, support a healthy immune system, and most of the other benefits turmeric offers.
Some people prefer to use supplements, and some cats prefer to eat them over raw turmeric. There is less of a scent, so I think this makes it easier to slip past those fussy, clever cats.
Turmeric Supplements for Cats
When using turmeric for cats with worms my best advice is to seek the advice of a vet to ensure you’re doing everything right by your cat.
As I covered above, worms are not just uncomfortable, they can cause some other potentially dangerous health issues. You need to take action sooner rather than later.
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Most cats are infected by tapeworm at some time in their lives. It is one of the most common internal parasites suffered by pets, partly because tapeworms are carried by fleas. Fortunately for cats, tapeworm is easily treatable with oral medication. You can prevent tapeworm by practicing vigilant flea control, keeping the cat’s coat and your home free of these pesky invaders.
What is Tapeworm?
A nasty intestinal parasite, tapeworms can infect both cats and dogs. The tapeworm looks like its name: a thin, whitish flat strand several inches long that resembles ribbon or tape. Containing male and female reproductive parts, tapeworms can multiply on their own, and will lay their eggs in your cat’s intestines. Tapeworms are considered more troublesome than dangerous. They rob nutrients from your cat, and in large numbers, cause it to lose weight. Mild diarrhea and appetite changes are other symptoms of tapeworm. And a heavily infested cat will also have a rough, patchy coat.
How Cats Get Tapeworm
The two most common types of tapeworms infecting cats are dipylidium caninum and taneia taeniaformis. Dipylidium caninum tapeworms are transmitted by flea larvae that have consumed tapeworm eggs. After a cat ingests a flea during grooming, the tapeworm hatches when the flea breaks down in the stomach. Taneia taeniaformis tapeworms arrive when a cat eats rodents that host tapeworm larvae. Both types of tapeworms hook onto a cat’s small intestines, where they mature in two to three weeks, then release their eggs.
If your cat has tapeworm, you’ll spot rice-like grains in the fur around your cat’s anus and in its litter box. (Your vet can also confirm their presence by checking a stool sample.) Those tiny grains are the tapeworm’s egg-filled segments passing out of the cat in its feces. Fleas ingest the eggs and restart the cycle.
One of the most common health issues in cats is the presence of tapeworms. Suspecting your cat has tapeworms isn’t cause to panic, though it’ll require your immediate attention. These worms are a type of internal parasite that cats can easily contract.
Unfortunately, it’s also easy for your furry friend to pass on these devious parasites to other animals and humans. Accordingly, you’ll want to take ample precautions and know how to treat tapeworms in cats to ensure your household remains happy and healthy.
What Are Tapeworms In Cats?
This particular type of parasite attaches to your cat’s intestines and looks like a flat, white worm you can often visibly see on your cat. These worms are different from other intestinal parasites you may have heard of like hookworms and roundworms.
Signs of Tapeworm in Cats
Tapeworms in kittens and tapeworms in cats are likely to show up either physically or affect your cat’s behavior. This type of parasite might cause the following:
- Worms in the stool or vomit
- Small worm-like segments near your cat’s anus
- If your cat is scooting around on his behind, then he or she might have worms
- Your cat is excessively licking its hind end
Additional symptoms to look for might include pale gums, issues with breathing, and itching. These parasites move, so they are likely to cause your cat discomfort which is why you might see your feline licking or itching excessively.
It might not be the nicest of activities, but you should take a closer look at your cat’s anus to ensure you don’t see any white specks. Cat grooming is normal, but if your cat is uncomfortable, they’lll be doing it more often. You can also look closely at your cat’s stool and vomit to look for worms moving and crawling around.
If you notice these changes in your cat, it’s best to inspect your pet for worms or consult a veterinarian if you are unsure.
What Causes Tapeworms In Cats?
It’s relatively easy for your cat to contract parasites, especially if your cat goes outdoors. They can be caused by fleas which every pet owner knows is a common issue. Fleas are a host for these worms, so even just one might be enough to infect your cat.
Cats who hunt and ingest rats, mice, rabbits, and birds might also be prone to parasites given these animals can transmit tapeworms to your cat.
Tapeworm Treatment For Cats?
If your cat has worms, don’t panic. There are both tapeworm medication options and some home remedies for tapeworms in cats that you can quickly implement.
The good news is that getting rid of tapeworms in cats is relatively easy. Your veterinarian can provide you with medicine called a dewormer. This will most likely be given as an oral medication, but it might be possible through an injection. The medication then works to dissolve the tapeworm within your cat’s intestines without any harmful side effects.
There is no proven home remedy for these parasites, but there are some popular methods that cat owners swear by. Pumpkin seeds are considered capable of killing these parasites and contain vitamins and minerals. Simply crush them and add them to your cat’s food. Boiled parsley water also acts as a diuretic and can help your cat to feel better. It’s best to consult with your veterinarian before trying a home remedy.
How To Prevent Tapeworms In Cats?
The best way to combat feline tapeworms isn’t just medication for cat tapeworms, but to prevent your cat from ever getting worms in the first place. Regular check-ups and vet visits are a good idea. Consider health insurance for cats as well so you aren’t surprised by any significant expenses that may unfold.
Sticking to a flea medicine schedule and applying it regularly can help ensure your cat has a better chance of not getting infected. Ensure your cat’s litter box is cleaned regularly, and limit exposure to other animals like rodents. With a little effort and good cat ownership best practices, your furry friend can remain happy and safe.
Cats and dogs both catch heartworm in the same way — through bites from heartworm-carrying mosquitoes — but heartworm affects cats in distinctly different, and often more dangerous, ways.
How Is Heartworm in Cats Different from Heartworm in Dogs?
Cats and dogs both catch heartworm through the bite of a worm-infected mosquito, and studies show cats are infected at a rate similar to dogs. However, heartworm disease in cats is drastically different from heartworm disease in dogs.
The first difference with heartworm in cats is in their size and quantity: Heartworms are typically smaller in cats than in dogs. And while heartworm‐positive dogs can be infected with multiple worms at once, cats are typically only infected with one or two worms.
While heartworms can live, grow and thrive in a dog for up to seven years, they usually only live for two to four years in a cat. Cats are an atypical host for heartworms, and worms in cats often don’t live to reach their adult stage. This is because heartworms trigger an intense immune reaction in cats that does not take place in dogs. While helpful in attacking the immature worms, this reactive immune response is typically very hard on the cat and can cause serious symptoms. In worms that do reach adulthood, when they eventually die, they can cause blood clots or inflammation in the infected cat’s lungs, which can prove dangerous or fatal for the cat.
The symptoms of heartworm infection can also differ between cats and dogs:
How Can You Prevent Heartworm in Cats?
Unfortunately, there is currently no approved treatment for heartworm in cats. A veterinarian can test your cat for heartworms, but even with testing, the disease can be difficult to diagnose. These tests might also be expensive and hard on your cat.
Here’s the bottom line: Where there are mosquitoes, there can be heartworm disease. You can’t ensure a mosquito‐free environment any time of year, especially in warm, humid areas of the country. This is why preventing heartworms with veterinarian-prescribed medication is essential for protecting your cat from this deadly parasite.
Ask your veterinarian about a heartworm preventative prescription for your cat.
Thursday, June 6, 2013
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How To Identify Worms In A Cat 14 Steps With Pictures Wikihow
Feline Tapeworm Infection A Treatable Parasite In Cats
Cat Care Fleas Parasites What Do Worms In Cats Look Like
Tapeworms Worms In Cat That Look Like Rice Or Sesame Seeds Mack
Can Humans Get Worms From Cats Lovetoknow
Tapeworms Worms In Cat That Look Like Rice Or Sesame Seeds Mack
Deworming Cats Naturally: Prevent Roundworms & Tapeworms in Cats
2014-07-10 Becky’s Homestead
Get Diatomaceous Earth on Amazon: http://goo.gl/xPDPb6 Becky shows you how to deworm your cats naturally without using any chemicals. This will help .
7 Natural Dog Worming And Cat Worming Treatment
2015-10-16 Erin Lacey
Natural treatments are the safest way to get rid of worms in dogs & cats. Main advantage of using natural treatment processes is zero side-effects. Dog worming .
Dewormer For Cats and Dogs without Chemicals
I have dewormed major infestations in my barn cats with this simple (and tasty) trick. I do not give this to inside animals at night since it might make their bowels a .
How Do I Get Rid Of Worms In My Cat Naturally?
2017-06-28 SS Health Tips
Home remedies for cats with worms in pet care deworming and eliminating fleas naturally the health non toxic worm dogs natural wonder petshow can i get rid of .
Emergency Cat Health Care : Treat a Cat that has Worms & Internal Parasites
Treat a cat that has worms and parasites and prevent them from spreading to other animals or people in this free video. Expert: Dr. Adrienne Mulligan Bio: Dr.
Symptoms of cats worms
2016-12-28 Animals Lovers
Whether they live exclusively indoors or spend time outside, pet cats may become host to internal parasites such as roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms .
Worms in cats and dogs
2013-09-26 Kynoch Vets
What is the risk? How do I treat and prevent worms? How often should I treat my pets?
De-worming Kittens: Healthy Cats
Kittens can be born with worms transmitted from their mother. Most of the time we won’t see them in the stool. This is why deworming is so important at a young .
Worms in cats | Pharmacy4pets.com
Read more about worms in cats on our website: http://www.pharmacy4pets.com/katten/ontwormen Does my cat have worms? Worm infections are very common .
Cat Care: Fleas & Parasites : What Do Worms in Cats Look Like?
Worms in cats can be roundworms, which look like spaghetti when passed through the stool or vomit, and tapeworms, which look like small segments of rice.
How to give your cat a tablet or worming pill
Lucy Chadwick, our in house veterinary surgeon at www.petdrugsonline.co.uk shows you how to give your cat a tablet or pill. She also shows how to safely .
Bayer Profender Treats Worms in Cats – No Prescription
2016-10-28 No Prescription Pet Meds
No prescription required online at https://noprescriptionpetmeds.com/profender-cat-wormer/ Profender is the first-ever, topical dewormer used to treat and control .
Apple Cider Vinegar can heal your dog or cat
2010-08-22 Lee Williams
Apple cider vinegar is a lifesaver. This simple home remedy does wonders for cats. It cures stomach problems including runny stool and urinary tract infections .
How to Remove Flea’s and Worms Part 2
2013-11-11 odamayriver productions
Part 2 – How to safely remove flea’s and worms from your cat – flea infestations often lead to your cat getting worms from eating the flea eggs. You will notice what .
How to remove flea’s/egg’s from your cat safely and simple
2013-09-02 odamayriver productions
New MESSAGE: Sept 21 AFTER FLEA’S NEXT COMES WORMS . Next video coming soon HOW TO RID YOUR CAT OF WORMS (Please visit my playlist for .
All-Natural Dewormer & Tick/Flea Treatment For Dogs/Cats That WORKS: Diatomaceous Earth (Dosage)
2016-02-24 Erikah Vanegas
Thank you for watching! Subscribe for new videos every week 🙂 MAIN YOUTUBE CHANNEL: .
Evidence of cats worms
2017-01-24 Animals Lovers
Whether they live exclusively indoors or spend time outside, pet cats may become host to internal parasites such as roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms.
Are Worms In Cats Contagious To Humans?
2017-06-09 SS Hair Health
The most common is the flea tapeworm (diplidium) which acquired by cat swallowing time symptoms do appear your cat’s health has already been damaged 12 .
Roundworms of Dogs (and Cats) – Plain and Simple
Almost everything you need to know about the roundworms of dogs and cats. For more information, visit these links: Companion Animal Parasite Council, .