Signs And Symptoms Of Worms In Cats
Im sure that by now youre wondering how you can tell if your cat has worms. Besides seeing the nasty parasites in your cats stool, here are the most common signs of worm infestation in cats:
- Weight loss despite a healthy appetite
- Bloated stomach
- Dragging the bottom along the carpet
- Something that looks like grain rice or sesame seeds in your cats bedding
- Skin problems
What Causes Worms In Cats
Before we talk about home remedies for cat parasites, lets learn more about the different types of worms in cats and how cats get infected. Thats going to help you prevent a second infestation once you deal with the imminent crisis.
So, cats often get infected with:
Roundworms are the most common parasites in cats, and they are responsible for almost 75% of all worm infestations. Often kittens get roundworms from their mother when the mother cat hasnt been dewormed properly before the birth.
Roundworms are 3-5 inches long, and they live in your cats intestines. As such, these worms steal your cats nutrients so that no matter how much your cat eats, she doesnt put on weight. In addition to this, roundworms are highly contagious because your cat sheds infected eggs with her stool and could lead to intestinal blockage.
Tapeworms resemble a ribbon or a tape, and they are made of segments that break off when the worm matures. These segments are shed in the feces and look like grains of rice. Cats get tapeworms when they eat a host infected with tapeworm eggs such as a flea or a rodent.
Hookworms, as the name suggests, attach themselves to your cats intestines and feed off her blood. Since the larvae live in the soil, your cat might swallow it easily when she digs outside. Hookworm infestation is very serious since it might lead to anemia.
How Do These Worms Affect My Cat
Worms do not cause your animal to eat ravenously, and are most unlikely to be a cause of weight loss in adult cats. Roundworms are most likely to cause symptoms in kittens in their first 12 months of life and severity of signs reflects the degree of worm burden and age of the animal.
Characteristic signs of an infestation include a pot-belly, stunted growth or weight loss and gastrointestinal signs such as vomiting and diarrhoea. Heavy burdens of migrating worm larvae in young kittens may be associated with liver or lung disease, and heavy burdens of adult worms in the gut can cause intestinal blockage. Sometimes deaths will occur.
Tapeworms have not generally been associated with specific clinical signs in the infected cat or dog, but the segments leaving the anus may cause irritation which you will observe as the affected animal licking or scooting its bottom along the ground.
If your cat is passing tapeworm segments there will also be some degree of flea infestation in the environment
Also Check: Are Scented Candles Bad For Cats
What Can I Do To Prevent Tapeworm
The best thing to do to prevent tapeworm is to prevent fleas. Even for indoor cats, I recommend a regular topical application of a product like Revolution Plus. And the nice thing about Revolution Plus is it protects against fleas and ticks and therefore prevents flea infestations. But it also deworms for at least roundworms and hookworms each month, which will keep us at a good baseline.
Question 1 Of : What Medical Treatments Do I Use For Worms
Don’t Miss: How To Stop Cat Scratching Door To Get In
Bayer Drontal Broad Spectrum Dewormer Best All Round Dewormer
Dealing with multiple infestations, or prefer a tablet that gives you peace of mind everything is covered? Bayers broad-spectrum dewormer is a perfect choice. Formulated to deal with tapeworms, hookworms, and roundworms, you can rest assured that all will be wiped out after a single dose.
Each tablet contains 18.2 mg praziquantel and 72.6 mg pyrantel as the active ingredients. This particular tub contains 50 doses the bulk purchase makes it a far cheaper option for those who have multiple cats. In our experience, the shelf-life of the tablets is roughly two years from the purchase date.
Diagnosing Your Cat’s Worms
Recommended Reading: How To Keep Cat From Scratching Door Frame
Important Notes On Worming For Cats
The precise frequency of a worm treatment for cats depends on likely exposure to tapeworms in particular .
Worm products sold at supermarkets have many ingredients that are ineffective and can sometimes have fatal consequences for our pets. Care is paramount when following the recommended dose. If a cat is given a higher dosage than diagnosed, it can kill her.
As cats can get tapeworms by swallowing an infected flea, flea control is vital around the house.
to download a printable version of the Feline Worming Factsheet, or visit the Feline Worming Factsheet page for more information.
See our page about Wormers for dogs to see all Vet worming tips.
Recommended Reading: Why Do Cats Hold Their Mouth Open
Why Does My Cat Still Have Worms After Deworming
Your cat might still have worms after deworming as dewormers take 2-4 days to take effect, or sometimes a second dose is also needed.
The worms will usually be gone in 2 to 3 weeks after you give your cat a dewormer. It may need a second deworming a few weeks later to get rid of all the worms.
Cats are noted for their impeccable hygiene. They can reinfect themselves with parasites as a result of this.
When your cat has parasite eggs in its rectum, it may lick it.
This causes them to reinfect themselves, necessitating the application of a new dewormer.
Most dewormers will be requiring an initial period of only 2-3 weeks to eliminate worms however, some treatments will also need a double dosage to eradicate the second wave of parasites.
Aside from roundworms and tapeworms- other parasitic worms can pose a more severe threat.
Heartworms, for example, can only be treated with prescription medication. Just like with non-prescription drugs, you should ask your veterinarian if they have any specific recommendations for your pet when selecting prescription dewormers.
You May Like: How Many Calories Should A 12 Lb Cat Eat
How Cats Are At Risk Of Intestinal Parasites
Unfortunately, its very easy for a cat to get parasites. A cat can pick up worms by ingesting the feces of another infected animal. Because of this, its easier for an outdoor cat to become infected than it is for an indoor-only cat. However, if you have a cat thats indoor-outdoor, then they can also bring these parasites into your home.
A nursing mother can pass on worms to her litter or just by living in close quarters. Cats can also get worms by eating animals that are infected, such as mice and rats.
A cat who doesnt receive a regular worming treatment is at a higher risk of an infestation. Since fleas can harbor several types of parasites and bacteria, keeping a cat free from fleas is one of the best steps towards keeping them parasite-free.
Your cats veterinarian can help you determine whether or not your cat has worms and what type of worms theyre infested with. Veterinarians will also set up a worming schedule to make sure you get rid of the parasites by following up treatment.
Does Your Cat Need A Dewormer
According to the Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine, intestinal parasites affect as many as 45% of cats. All cats are prone to parasite infestations but cats that spend a lot of time outdoors have a higher risk for infestation than indoor cats.
Intestinal worms rarely cause life-threatening issues in adult cats, but kittens and cats with heavy worm burdens can suffer from severe effects as the parasites cause bleeding, injure the intestines, and steal needed nutrients.
A heavy worm infestation may cause the following symptoms:
- Biting/licking the anus
Many of these symptoms are related to malnutrition that can develop if an intestinal parasite infection goes untreated for a long time.
Though most worm infestations are not life-threatening, they can be quite dangerous for kittens if they develop anemia from blood loss. Intestinal blockages caused by too many tapeworms can also be deadly.
Read Also: Injured Cat Tail
How To Keep Your Cat Worm
People who cohabitate with one or more cats have long feared worming their feline masters friends because giving a tablet to a cat is at best, difficult, and at worst, associated with physical and mental scarring .
Why is it so difficult to tablet cats?
Firstly, although cats have less tastebuds than humans and dogs, however, they are highly sensitive to the flavours they can detect. They also have a scent/taste organ in the roof of their mouths which contributes to the heightened sense of taste, and their rough tongue coating traps particles for longer, extending the amount of time they can taste the tablet or medication.
- Cats have a strong tongue which they can push forward to eject unwanted objects easily.
- They also have sharp teeth and claws and a strong hatred of being forced to do anything that they did not themselves choose to do.
- Cats are both strong and slippery.
- Attempts at bribery are usually met with disdain.
- These are all valid reasons to be hesitant to worm your cat. They do, however, require worming every 3 months to protect themselves and also their humans from potentially damaging worm infestations.
Reasons to worm your cat
How, pray tell, do I worm my cat then?
If you can no longer handle the thought of a tablet, there are pastes which can be easier to administer .
OR you can not put anything in their mouth at all and still worm them!
How To Deworm Your Cat
Intestinal tapeworms and roundworms are very common in kittens and adult cats. Unless they have a very heavy worm infestation most infected cats show no ill effects, but heavy worm burdens can cause irritation around the anus, enlarged abdomen, weight loss and vomiting and diarrhoea . Some worms can also infect people so regular deworming is vital for feline and human health.
What are worms and how can my cat catch them?
Roundworms are the most common intestinal parasites in kittens and cats. They are long, white and look like spaghetti. Eggs from these worms are passed in the faeces and can live for months or years in the soil. Cats can become infected in three main ways:
- Ingestion of eggs directly from contaminated soil e.g. by licking them off their feet
- Consumption of a rodent who has previously eaten worm eggs from the environment
- Ingestion by kittens of worm larvae in their mothers milk.The vast majority of newborn kittens are infected with roundworms by this route.
How to deworm a cat or kitten
Kittens: Because roundworms are so common in kittens it is vital to begin treatment from an early age. It is commonly recommended to treat kittens for roundworms every 2 weeks from 2 until 8 weeks of age, then monthly until 6 months of age and every 1- 3 months thereafter. Kittens only require tapeworm treatment if they also have fleas.
Adult cats should be treated every 1 to 3 months with a product which is effective against both roundworms and tapeworms.
You May Like: Blue Wilderness Canned Cat Food
Peak Marketing Pet Wormer Gel
- Appetizing flavor
- Easy to use
Providing your pet with all the comfort and ease also includes getting it rid of all kinds of worms that may otherwise lead to severe health problems. This Peak Marketing pet wormer gel is one of the best methods to help your pet with this problem. The 4oz gel is the safest way of removing large roundworms that are most likely to affect your pets health. Knowing the product deeply, we realized that it is one of the cheapest medications that we could easily use for our pet. Being comfortably affordable made us worry-free about its expense.
This easy-to-use pet wormer gel does not call for much effort to be made while feeding. You can conveniently apply into your pets mouth or can be mixed well with the food. Since it is flavored well, you feed your pet without any difficulty. This safest dewormer for cats can be used for pets over 6 weeks of age and treats well up to 118 lbs kittens. The wormeze gel works well for all life stages containing piperazine as the active ingredient. Thus, it becomes comfortable to be used for cats, dogs, pups, and kittens without any threat to their health.
Features To Look For In The Best Dewormer For Cats
Not all the deworming drugs being sold in the market will be good for use on your cat. A veterinarian is the best person to examine your friend and advice you appropriately.
If your best friend is diagnosed with worms, then there are features you have to look for in the drug you have to purchase.
Discussed below are the features that the best dewormer for cats should have:
Don’t Miss: What Is 16 Years In Cat Years
What Are Some Possible Conditions Caused By Intestinal Parasites And What Are The Treatments
Again, I keep going back to weight loss as the biggest thing, because either weight loss in and of itself or soft stool, diarrhea, which leads to weight loss, are some of the most common things that you’re going to see. Anemia is another one because certain types of worms, like hookworms, for example, do latch onto the intestines and they feed on blood. So if you have enough of those, your cat can get anemia, anemia meaning a lack of red blood cells. So you can have that, particularly in kittens. You would have to have an absolute truckload of hookworms in an adult animal for them to get anemia, but in a kitten, not so much. You’re talking about a one or two-pound kitten, so it wouldn’t take near as many to see that same effect on them.
How To Prevent Worms In Pets
Prevention is always better than cure, so follow these tips to reduce the risk of your pet catching worms.
- Disinfect food and water bowls regularly.
- Ensure housing is regularly cleaned and disinfected, but only use a disinfectant that’s safe for animals.
- Good pasture management is needed for horses, ponies, donkeys and rabbits to prevent them from eating the larvae and eggs of worms. This may involve removing droppings and rotating which areas your animal has access to.
- Avoid collecting greens for rabbits from areas where wild rabbits and rodents have been. If your rabbits are kept outside, place their housing so that exposure to wild rabbits and rodents is minimised.
- Pregnant animals should only be wormed under the supervision of a vet.
- Clean up after your pet and dispose of faeces carefully.
- Wash your hands thoroughly before you eat.
For more advice on how to get rid of worms, have a read of our ‘get worm wise guide‘.
Read Also: How Much Is Blue Buffalo Cat Food
How Do You Deworm A Cat
Prices pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:
Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Usually, your vet will test your cats stool for parasites to determine what the worms are. Then he will give medication for cat worming based on the results.
Besides a deworming product, you can use some home remedies to deal with mild worm infestations. However, you should consult your vet if you notice that the treatment is not working. In addition to this, do not try these remedies if your cat is exhibiting additional symptoms such as fever.
Kittens should be dewormed as young as four weeks old since they could already be infected with worms. They are too young for home remedies and should be taken to the vet.