The thought of your dog being a host for malicious worms is not a pleasant one. These wriggling, unsightly and slimy parasites often find home inside our furry friends and are known to cause quite a havoc inside our little friends. But apart from being utterly repulsive, these pests are known to cause diseases and can easily pass onto other dogs and even humans, especially if you don’t have a habit of disposing of your pet’s waste.
In this article, we’ll educate you on the dangers of worms in dogs, what the symptoms are and most importantly, how you can keep these nasty pests away from your dog and your family.
Dogs May Not Show Any Symptoms
People often expect that if their pups are struggling with a worm infestation, they will show some symptoms. However, that is not always true. Dogs can carry around dangerous worms in their lungs or intestines without any apparent signs of illness. Even though your dog appears to be in good shape, they might be fighting a dangerous battle inside. Worse off, if left untreated dogs will shed worm eggs and possibly infect other puppies. That’s why veterinarians recommend having your dog de-wormed regularly, even if there are no signs of a worm infestation.
Scooting is Not Always a Sign of Worms
A lot of pet owners believe that when their dog rubs its bottom along the carpet, also called scooting, worms are the reason. However, there could be other reasons why your dog does that like allergies, itchy skin or infected anal sacs. If your dog scoots a lot, have a vet inspect it to find the cause and recommend the treatment. (See also: 8 Essentials Tips on Taking Care of Your Pets)
Symptoms Can Be Unnerving
Even though sometimes dogs show no symptoms of worm infestation at all, at other times the symptoms they exhibit can be very traumatic for their owners. The symptoms can range from insatiable appetite, weight loss and vomiting to more dangerous ones like trouble breathing and coughing. Lungworms, in particular, can be extremely dangerous, as they can prevent the dog’s blood from clotting, leading to hemorrhages. There have been cases of puppies dying unexpectedly from a brain hemorrhage, not knowing what the cause was until the autopsy shows a worm infestation.
Dog Worms Can Affect Humans Too!
The most common worm found in dogs, Toxocara Canis, can also be passed on to humans. Adults’ immune system is strong enough to battle the parasite, so the danger is often non-existent. However, these pests are much more dangerous to children. Not only are kids more prone to mess around things they shouldn’t (like infested dog poop someone didn’t bother to pick up), the worms can cause a lot more chaos in their still-developing bodies. If the worms reach their eye or brain, kids could face serious issues like seizures or blindness. That’s why dog owners should act responsibly for the sake of children and dispose of their dog’s waste using appropriate dog waste bags.
We are Responsible for Protecting Them
The fact is that dogs can contract these pests anywhere. However, it is our responsibility to protect our pets from worm infestation by taking steps such as de-worming them regularly, properly disposing of their waste in public areas, washing our hands after playing with them and more. Worm eggs are particularly tenacious and can survive for years, which is why taking these steps to prevent them is essential.
About The Author:
Thomas is an academic who is always looking to expand his knowledge. An avid reader and podcast listener, he believes that a day when you don’t learn anything new is a day wasted. He is interested in technology and sustainable energy, but his true passion and hobby is bookbinding and books in general.