Before using any type of herbal or organic dog worm “cure” it is important to understand that there is absolutely no substitute for a veterinarians diagnosis and care. If you prefer to visit a holistic veterinarian, feel free to do so, as long as the vet is licensed and has been in practice for several years.
If you are interested in the different types organic dog worm “cures” that may be prescribed, we can provide a list for you. Again, this is just a list of non-conventional dog worm remedies. It is not meant to diagnose, treat, or cure any given condition.
About Dog Worms
Worms can happen to any pet, even pets that have been monitored closely. Unfortunately, elusive creatures such as fleas can land on your dog (or in his mouth) while outdoors, at the park, or on the dog run. Fleas are a major source of certain types of worms, such as tapeworms. When a dog accidentally swallows an infected flea, worms can hatch in the dog’s intestines.
Animal carcasses such as rodents and rabbits may also contain tapeworms, and
dog worms can also be contracted from other pet’s feces. Pet feces can found in abundance around parks, on pet runs, and even in your own backyard. Whipworm and roundworm eggs can remain infectious for years, and hookworm larvae can multiply in the soil in and around a dog run, park, or yard.
Hookworms, tapeworms, roundworms, and whipworms live in the dog’s intestines and the heartworm lives in the dog’s heart and in the blood vessels that lead from the heart to the lungs. Round worms look like spaghetti and tapeworm segments look like grains of rice. If left untreated any type of dog worm can lead to serious complications in the digestive system, but heartworm is the most dangerous dog worm of them all.
Once your dog has been infected, you will notice a number of different symptoms. Your dog may have only one symptom or he could have all of them.
Symptoms of dog worms include:
- Change in your dog’s appetite
- Coughing and hiccupping (due to heartworm)
- Distended abdomen in puppies
- Dull coat
- Inability to exercise
- Weight loss
Because heartworm is the deadliest type of worms in dogs, symptoms may be different from other dog worm symptoms. Symptoms of heartworm include:
- Abnormal heart sounds
- Abnormal lung sounds
- Difficulty breathing
- Enlargement of the liver
- Exercise intolerance
- Fluid accumulation in the abdomen
- Temporary loss of consciousness
While heartworm is most common in dogs, it can also affect more than 30 additional species of animals including cats, wolves, coyotes, ferrets, and even sea lions. Unfortunately, heartworm can affect humans as well. Although heartworm (also spelled “heart worm”) can affect other species and humans, dogs are its preferred host. It doesn’t matter where the pet lives either. Heartworms can thrive just about anywhere. In fact, heartworm cases have been reported all over the United States and in breeds of all kinds. Heartworm is not specific to older or younger dogs, male or female dogs, urban or rural dogs or well to do or average dogs.
Dog’s can become infected with heartworm from insect bites, mainly mosquito bites. When a mosquito bites the dog, the infection is transmitted through the dogs skin. The larvae develop in the body over a period of several months during which time they grow and migrate to the heart, lungs, and blood vessels.
In the earliest stages of heartworm, there are no abnormal signs of infections. In mild cases, coughing is present. In the moderate stage, you may notice coughing, exercise intolerance and abnormal lung sounds. In the most severe cases, all of the above symptoms above may be present. If the infection is severe enough, it can cause death.
Once you suspect that your dog has worms, the first thing to do is rush him to a vet. There is no substitution for a vets care, especially if you suspect that your dog has heartworm. Most pet owners would like to hear that they can just go online and find the most effective treatments for dog worms at a low cost. Unfortunately, cutting corners when it comes to dog worm treatment is dangerous. Again, caring for a dog with worms should only be done only under the care of a vet.
Most non-prescription medications don’t work. A professional veterinarian will have access to a number of innovative medications and preventatives that are extremely effective against the most aggressive types of parasites such as roundworm, whipworm, hookworm, and heartworm. These medications and preventatives are not available without a prescription. If you do find prescription dog worm medications that are available without a prescription, be weary. Mainly because: how do you know exactly which ones to give to your dog? How much? For how long? How can you test your dog for worms? How can you tell if an infection has completely cleared? Again, see your vet for the sake of your pet.
How to Prevent Dog Worms
Fortunately, there are ways to prevent dog worms. One of the most important ways to prevent a serious dog worm infection is to have your pet screened for worms twice per year. If your dog is considered high-risk for worms, you should have him screened more than twice a year. High-risk dogs typically live in condensed urban areas and they usually live in a home with more than one pet. Show pets and hunting dogs are also considered high-risk.
In addition to preventative measures, it’s also a good idea to keep your dog clean and well groomed. You should also dispose of dog feces immediately. Never leave it in piles around your yard, dog run, etc. If you notice any of the symptoms of dog worms listed above, please contact your vet immediately.
American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association
2218 Old Emmorton Road
Bel Air, MD 21015
e-mail: [email protected]
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