One of the most unpleasant things about having a dog as a pet (apart from the occasional dog hair you might find on your plate or your favorite shoes being chewed) is the thought of your pet being a home to slimy parasites. Yikes! But it’s a fact that at one point or another your dog will get some type of worms. Well, these miniature canine invaders can be harmful to your pet in the form of many diseases. As a pet parent, I am sure that you love your four-legged friend tons and you certainly don’t want to see it going through such discomfort. In light of that, let’s go through the most common signs that your dog has worms and what you can do to deworm your dog.
Firstly, your dog having worms is not a reflection of bad care, so you certainly shouldn’t feel bad about it. Actually, most puppies are born with worms. They can inherit this infection from their mother as well as from swallowing larvae from their mother’s milk. Adult dogs can get worms from doing the things they love the most like playing outside, digging in the dirt, eating infected insects or from swallowing fleas whilst grooming themselves. This makes worms in dogs very common and probably as a dog owner you will deal with this type of problem sooner or later.
Signs That Your Dog Has Worms
Since some worms that infect dogs live in the intestines and are visible to the naked eye, (tapeworms, for instance, resemble a flat grain of rice) if you notice some in your dog’s feces, obviously that’s a clear sign that your dog has worms. Others can’t be seen but there are some signs you can keep in mind. If your dog is vomiting, coughing, chewing or licking under his tail, losing energy and weight, if it’s constantly hungry (because these parasites absorb nutrients from the dog) you may need to check if your pet has worms. In cases like these, it’s best to get a stool sample for lab testing where they can be confirmed. Other symptoms as coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath can be caused by lungworms that live in the arteries of the lungs. But sometimes there are no signs of worms at all. This is why it’s recommended to do a routine de-worming, even if your pet appears to be in perfect health.
Using wormer for dogs is the most effective way to get your dog free of worms. They can usually be found in the form of tablets or applied to the skin. These medications contain substances that break down and weaken worms so that they can be expelled from your dog’s body.
As already mentioned, there are a number of different worm species that can affect dogs. That is why in order to tackle this problem, it’s best if you can use wormer for dogs that can kill every type of worm that can be commonly found in dogs. The dose of the treatment depends on your dog’s weight, so make sure you weigh your dog before you buy wormer for dogs. Not doing so may lead to you under-dosing or even worse, overdosing your dog.
Also, it’s not unusual for the dog to spit the tablet out or throw it up after a while. This can happen mainly because dogs usually dislike the taste of the substances that the tablet was made from. To prevent this from happening, make sure to buy dog worming tablets that for instance have a liver taste that your dog will love and disguise the medicine in a treat.
As mentioned earlier, dogs don’t always show signs of worm infections although they may suffer from one. That is why de-worming your dog should be a part of their care. Small puppies need to be given a small dose of wormer for dogs every two weeks between the age of four and twelve weeks as a single worm dose is not enough to eradicate all they have picked up from their mum. Adult dogs, on the other hand, should be dewormed once every three months as a routine measure.
Another effective and safe way to treat worms in your dog is with the help of everyday foods, that you probably have at home. Giving your dog fermented veggies, for instance, can help eliminate worms by boosting your dog’s immune system and the fiber will help to naturally get rid of the worms. You can either buy fermented veggies like sauerkraut or kimchi, or make your own. Kefir is another fermented food that’s great for this purpose.
On a final note, we all can agree that worms are gross. But even when your dog has worms, it still needs your love. Don’t be afraid to get close to your four-legged friend and show your affection with snuggles and nose kisses.