The parasite wolf worm is the larva of the Botfly. The botfly (or botflies) belongs to the family Oestroidea. It’s larva, the wolf worm, live in the bodies of mammals. Around 150 known species of botfly exists around the world, but only one is known to attack humans. When the botfly finds a suitable host – any animal ranging from rodents to outdoor cats and horses, the fly deposits its eggs in the animals skin. The animal’s body heat causes the eggs to hatch almost immediately. The eggs are yellow in color and once hatched, the wolf worm will migrate deep into the skin tissues or the digestive tract. The wolf worm known as “screw worm,” is around half an inch long and tan in color. It has one brown spot on one end of the body.
How to Get Rid of Wolf Worms in Pets
Wolf worm infestations can cause a number of symptoms in house pets. In cats, the parasite wolf worm can cause heavy breathing, lethargy, and lumps on the skin with holes in them. Once you have determined that your pet has wolf worms, you should take him or her to a vet immediately. It’s never a bad idea to seek professional help. Your vet can provide a definite diagnosis and effective treatment options.
If you can’t make to the vet right away, you can apply a warm compress to the lumps, then squeeze the area very gently. More than likely, the wolf worm will make its way to the surface. When it appears, you can pluck it from the skin using a pair of tweezers. You should clean the site area with an antibacterial product for several days, again, if you cannot make it to the vet right away. Unfortunately, your pet can be infected with more than a few wolf worms, so this method might not get rid of all of the worms. And more importantly, if you apply too much pressure to the lump, the worm can actually burst within the pet’s muscles. This can create a deep tissue infection. In most cases the infection can be severe, leading to anaphylactic shock. This condition can even be fatal. So again, please take your pet to a vet as soon as possible.
Countries Where Botflies are Common
Africa (several small provinces)
Canada (Southern Ontario)
Coast of Ecuador
England – mainly Surrey
British Columbia, Canada (Northern)
United States (Southern U.S.)