Get Rid of Dog Worms Fast!

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Filed under New Pet Products at PetMeds

Sometimes puppies are born with worms

Worms are icky! Not just for your pet, but for you too. Unfortunately, there are many types of worms, and in warmer weather, your dog is more apt to contract them. Warm temperatures bring out pests like fleas and mosquitoes that can make your dog sick. So not only do you have to worry about itchy flea and mosquito bites, but internal parasites as well! Read More »

Intestinal Parasites – Awareness is Key

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Filed under Pharmacy Blog

The usual signs of worm infection are diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, a distended belly, and weight loss.

Taking my dog Daisy out for a walk very early in the morning is a refreshing and soul rejuvenating experience. Dogs are always in the “now” and when I’m able to stay aware of the “now” with my Daisy each morning, I enjoy the gift of being part of a truly magical place appropriately called “The Present.” In that state of awareness I don’t have a care in the world, no conversation that I have to engage in, no questions that I have to answer, no bills to pay, no job to go to, and for a brief period of time each morning I feel firmly connected with the universe and at ONE with all of creation.

Before I begin my daily walks, I usually let Daisy go use her favorite spot in my yard to relieve herself. On this one particular April morning my daily walk and peace of mind were threatened when I noticed small flat segmented worms that looked like rice in Daisy’s stool. What I was looking at was most certainly an infestation of tapeworms. For the past 6 years I have advised many people on how to effectively and easily eradicate tapeworms, but now that it was my own pet with them, all that knowledge seemed to be drowning in a tidal wave of emotions. Luckily for Daisy and for me, most of the medication used for the treatment of tapeworms is readily available, not too expensive, and does not require a prescription. Read More »

How Did My Pet Get Worms?

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Filed under Dr. Dym's Vet Blog

Intestinal parasites are common in younger kittens and puppies

Intestinal parasites are common in younger puppies and kittens and, to a lesser extent, adult and senior pets. In fact, many veterinarians and animal guardians often forget that most puppies and kittens are born with certain parasites such as roundworms which are often transmitted from mother to puppies prior to birth or shortly after birth through the milk. In most other cases, adult and senior pets develop an innate immunity to many intestinal parasites, and are typically less susceptible to intestinal parasites. In these cases fecal/oral transmission is the typical mode of infection with pets acquiring parasites through ingestion of eggs from contaminated soils or by licking feces of an infected animal.

Diagnosis of intestinal parasites is typically made by microscopic exam of feces and fecal flotation performed at the veterinary office. Treatment of intestinal parasites will depend upon the specific type of parasite present. In many cases, if pets are placed on monthly heartworm prevention medication such as Sentinel or Heartguard many intestinal parasites can be prevented, as these monthly medications also control and prevent many intestinal parasites.

Intestinal Parasites in Dogs and Cats

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Filed under Dr. Dym's Vet Blog

Intestinal parasites are common in dogs and cats.

Intestinal parasites are fairly common in dogs and cats, and can cause varied symptoms from digestive tract signs (including diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal distention,  weight loss along with changes in appetite) to respiratory symptoms (coughing, difficulty breathing).

Most intestinal parasites are not seen visually in the stool samples by owners, and are usually identified by finding their microscopic eggs in a stool check performed by the veterinarian.

Exceptions to this would include tapeworms, which are often identified by the presence of mobile, flat white rice-like segments seen in the stool or near the anal opening or tail base of affected pets.  Clients also occasionally see pets vomit long stringy worms known as roundworms.

Because the most susceptible populations are young puppies and kittens, it is important to not only check stool samples at least twice from the ages of 6 to 16 weeks of age, but also to worm these youngsters with broad-spectrum wormers such as Pyrantel, Strongid or Nemex.   This is especially important when there are young children present in the house, as certain parasites such as roundworms and hookworms may be transmissible to people.

With adult pets, I recommend checking stool samples at least once yearly. Monthly heartworm preventative medications such as Sentinel and Heartguard Plus not only prevent heartworm infestation, but also control and treat many common intestinal worms, which is why it is recommended to keep dogs and cats on these preventatives year-round.  Parasites such as whipworms and Giardia are sometimes difficult to identify in stool samples, so veterinarians will often worm pets for these when clinical symptoms of diarrhea, weight loss or vomiting are present in adult pets.

What are Whipworms?

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Filed under Dr. Dym's Vet Blog
Whipworms have an elusive life cycle that can sometimes make them hard to control and kill Whipworms are pesky parasites that can cause varying degrees of diarrhea often containing mucous and/or blood. These worms typically reside in the colon of dogs, and while some dogs can have no clinical signs, the most frustrating aspect of whipworm infections is that diagnosis is usually difficult because they have a life-cycle that makes detecting eggs in the feces difficult.

In fact, many veterinarians will treat dogs for a presumptive diagnosis of whipworms if a history of mucoid and/or bloody diarrhea exists and no other causes have been found. Another frustrating aspect of whipworm infection is how resistant they are to being eliminated in the home environment of the dog. It is often necessary to use dilute preparations of bleach in the yard to try and cut down on whipworm eggs in the environment. Treatment for whipworms typically consists of a worming medication known as Panacur C for a period of 3 days.

Fortunately monthly heartworm preventative medication such as Sentinel not only prevents heartworms, but also controls and prevents whipworms. Therefore, I always use Sentinel as my heartworm preventative medication of choice whenever whipworms are diagnosed in dogs.