Round worms in dogs are not a cause for panic — if caught early. If left untreated, round worms can cause major problems in your pet’s intestines and digestive system. Round worms feed on fecal matter, dead organisms, and living tissues. Feeding can take place outside of or within the pet’s body. Round worms are easy to contract from dog runs, parks, carcasses, and even from casual contact with other animals. Round worms can be found around pets’ paws (from scratching around the anus.
One of the easiest ways to detect round worms is to examine your dog’s feces. You should be able to see any dog worms or segments in plain sight. It is also important to be able to distinguish what the different types of worms look like. Round worms look like spaghetti and tapeworm segments look like grains of rice.
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In addition to dog runs, parks, other pets, and dead animals, fleas are a major source of worms. When a dog accidentally swallows an infected flea, worms can hatch in the dog’s intestines. Round worm eggs can remain infectious for years, so keeping your yard clean and keeping your pet away from dirty dog runs and dead rodents is crucial to keeping him worm-free.
If you notice any changes in your dog’s behavior, weight or eating habits, he may have round worm. Symptoms of round worm include:
·Change in your dog’s appetite
·Coughing and hiccupping (due to heartworm)
·Distended abdomen in puppies
·Inability to exercise
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There are ways to prevent round worms. One of the most important ways to prevent a serious 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 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.
Caring for a dog with round 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.
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 canine worms listed above, please contact your vet immediately. Continue reading to learn more about the most serious of all dog worms — heartworm.
Interested in alternative cures for dog worms? Speak with your vet about alternative cures or contact the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association to locate a holistic vet in your area.