Symptoms of worms in puppies and kittens are pretty much the same. Some symptoms can be detected by sight while others may show up through the puppy or kittens behavior. One of the most obvious puppy and kitten worm symptoms is presence of worms in your pets. Your pet might have any number of parasitic worms in its feces such as the half-inch-long hookworm or a tapeworm. The tapeworm can reach up to a whopping three feet long if left untreated and it may have as many as 90 segments.
Other types of parasitic worms common to puppies and kittens include: roundworm, whipworm, and heartworm. Hookworms, tapeworms, roundworms, and whipworms live in the pet’s intestines and the heartworm lives in the pets heart and in the blood vessels that lead from the heart to the lungs. If left untreated any type of puppy or kitten worm can be fatal, but the heartworm is the most dangerous of them all.
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In addition to finding worms in your pet’s stool, other puppy and kitten worm symptoms include:
·Change in your pet’s appetite
·Coughing and hiccupping (due to heartworm)
·Distended abdomen kittens
·Inability to exercise
In addition to recognizing puppy and kitten worm symptoms, it is also important to recognize what the different types of pet worms look like. Round worms look like spaghetti and tapeworm segments look like grains of rice. In addition to your pet’s food, puppy and kitten worms can also be found in on or buried in your pet’s fur, around his anus, around his paws (from scratching) and it is not uncommon to find them in your pet’s ears.
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Fortunately, there are ways to prevent pet worms. One of the most important ways to prevent a serious puppy or kitten worm infection is to have your pet screened As your pet grows, he or she should be screened twice a year. If your pet is considered high-risk for worms, you should have him screened more than twice a year. High-risk pets typically live in condensed urban areas and they usually live in a home with more than one pet. Outdoor cats are especially susceptible to worms.
Caring for a pet with worms should be done only under the care of a vet. Most non-prescription medications don’t work. Your vet will have access to a number of cutting edge preventatives that are extremely effective against the most aggressive types of parasites such as roundworm, whipworm, hookworm, and heartworm.
It is important to keep in mind that fleas are a source of certain types of tapeworms. When a kitten or puppy accidentally swallows an infected flea, the tapeworms can hatch in the pet’s intestines. These types of tapeworms can also be transmitted to humans as well. Animal carcasses such as rodents and rabbits may also contain tapeworms, so if you have an outdoor cat, it will be impossible to keep him away from them. You may want to rethink allowing your cat to roam around freely outdoors. Regarding dogs, you just have to keep a very watchful eye when walking your dog around outside or playing in the park.
It’s also a good idea to keep your pet clean and well groomed. You should also dispose of puppy and kitten feces immediately. Never leave it in piles in the litter box, around the yard or on the dog run. Whipworm and roundworm eggs can remain infectious for years, and hookworm larvae can multiply quickly in dirty litter boxes.
If you notice any of the symptoms of pet worms listed above, please contact your vet immediately.