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Worming

Dogs

Roundworms (Toxocara species)

Worming against roundworms in puppies should start at 2 weeks of age and continue regularly until the pups are 12 weeks old. Pups pick up infection directly from their mothers and via the mother’s milk. Heavy roundworm infections in pups can cause obstruction of the bowel and failure to gain weight normally.

We recommend worming adult dogs against roundworms at least every 3 - 4 months.

We have various effective, easy to use products that come in liquid, tablet or ‘Spot on’ formulations that we can recommend for puppies and adult dogs.

Did you know that roundworms can cause illness in people?

The adult roundworm found in dogs (Toxocara canis) lives in the dog’s intestine. When it lays eggs, these eggs pass out into the environment via the faeces (they are microscopic so you can’t see them). The eggs can survive in soil for over one year.

If a person accidentally consumes a small amount of soil containing an egg or eggs then the larvae of the roundworm can cause illness as they migrate through the person’s body. If the larvae reach the back of the eye they can cause blindness.

Infection with Toxocara is most common in children aged 1 - 4 years of age because their play habits make them more likely to come into contact with infected soil.

If you have young children we may advise more frequent treatment against roundworms for your dog.

Regular treatment of your dog against roundworms decreases the number of eggs that pass into the environment.

Tapeworms

Dogs can become infected with tapeworms if they have fleas or if they eat raw meat or other animals (i.e. rabbits).

Treatment against tapeworms is recommended based on your dog’s lifestyle.

Whipworms and hookworms

These worms are more common in kenneled dogs or where there are large numbers of dogs kept together. Treatment against these worms is recommended based on your dog’s lifestyle.

Lungworms

The life-threatening lungworm Angiostrongylus vasorum is carried by slugs and snails. If your dog accidentally swallows one of thse there is a risk he or she could become infected. An infection with this parasite can prove fatal.

Infections have been most commonly recorded in the southern parts of England and Wales up to the Midlands with particular prevalence in Cornwall, Swansea and Surrey. It is thought that infection is becoming more widespread and there have been confirmed cases in Northamptonshire.

We are now recommending preventative treatment for lungworm using a 'Drop-on' preparation available only from vets.

For more information please visit www.lungworm.co.uk

Cats

Roundworms (Toxocara species)

Treatment against roundworms should start at 6 weeks of age in kittens and continue regularly until they are 12 - 14 weeks of age. Kittens become infected from their mother’s milk. Heavy infections with roundworms in kittens can cause obstruction of the bowel and failure to gain weight normally.

We recommend worming adult cats who go outside at least every 3 - 4 months against roundworms.

Adult ‘Indoor’ cats, who never go outside may not need worming regularly against roundworms provided they were wormed appropriately as kittens.

The roundworm species found in cats (Toxocara cati and Toxascaris leonina) are now thought to also cause disease in people in the same way as the dog roundworm.

Tapeworms

Cats can become infected with tapeworms if they have fleas or if they hunt and catch small rodents such as mice.

We recommend worming ‘hunting’ cats against tapeworms at least every 3 - 4 months.

Indoor cats or cats that do not hunt do not need regular treatment against tapeworms provided they do not have fleas.

It can be difficult to give worming tablets to cats. We have ‘Spot on’ products that we can recommend to you which are effective against roundworms and tapeworms as well as dual action ‘Spot on’ products effective against fleas and roundworms.

Further information

If you would like more information about parasites affecting dogs and cats please visit www.itsajungle.co.uk

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