As a dog parent, the thought of worms afflicting your dog is terrifying. However, in reality, worms attach to dogs very easily. While some of these worms can be treated relatively easily with home remedies, others are more dangerous and can worsen conditions if not treated immediately.
Hence, it is of utmost importance to develop a good understanding that will help identify dog worms. This is inevitably the first step you have to take up as a parent of a pet parent. Once you have successfully identified the worm depending on your dog’s symptoms, you can move to the more concrete steps of dealing with these worms. However, in the case of worms in dogs, remember prevention is always better than cure.
Do you have a specific question about identifying dog worms? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page.
Here's what we'll cover:
- What are worms in dogs?
- How do dogs get worms?
- Does my dog have worms?
- Identifying dog worms: symptoms of worms in dogs
- How to tell if there are worms in dog poop
- Signs of worms in puppies
- What are the chances of getting worms from your dog?
- What to do if my dog has worms
What are worms in dogs?
Before you can begin identifying dog worms, you must learn the different types of worms that can infect your dog. These worms are basically parasites that treat your dog as a host body. Once the worms lodge themselves, they multiply innumerably and draw nutrition from your dog.
This makes your little pup weak and leads to the development of various symptoms, which may later develop into something even more fatal.
Some of the most common worms in dogs include tapeworm, roundworm, hookworm, heartworm, whipworms, ticks, and lice. These worms are generally found in the intestine of dogs, but some worms like fleas and lice are external parasites.
Of all the worms discussed above, heartworms are the most fatal in dogs and are transmitted by mosquitoes.
Although it is highly preventable, it is a cause of worry. So, if you’re worried that your dog has worms, it is best to get a formal diagnosis from a doctor immediately.
How do dogs get worms?
While there are a wide variety of worms that can infect your dog, there are only some ways canine worms can enter their system. One of the most significant sources through which dogs can get worms is by feeding on worm eggs. Intestinal parasites enter a dog when the dog eats a worm egg that has been found in the vomit or feces of another animal.
This can happen if your dog eats raw meals that have been infested with these worms in the first place. For instance, tapeworms spread into a dog’s intestine when tapeworm larvae are consumed. Besides, if your dog has fleas on its coat, it can get into the intestines when it licks its fur.
In fact, worms in dogs might also have a hereditary factor. It can be passed from a mother to the child during birth. In such a case, the puppy is born with worms, which can be very fatal in the long run. The best way to prevent this is by providing proper prenatal care to a childbearing dog so that the pup is strong and healthy.
In the case of external parasites, your dog can catch lice or fleas from other infected dogs. If you take your dog to the dog park where they socialize with animals, it is wise to take them for annual checkups to ensure they are not infected with canine worms.
Does my dog have worms?
Worms in dogs are actually a widespread phenomenon. So, if you have a dog, you have to be very mindful of the various symptoms of worms in dogs. If your dog is showing any change in its behavior, it might be because of some underlying condition.
It is also essential to take your dog to the veterinarian as soon as you notice these signs. A veterinarian will perform various tests and form a proper diagnosis. You can start the treatment process at home right after it’s done.
Identifying dog worms: symptoms of worms in dogs
There are various dog symptoms of worms that you must be mindful of. These symptoms include:
You will notice that your dog is looking sickly and has a lack of interest in things that they enjoy. They have a general lack of energy in doing most activities.
Frequent bouts of vomiting cannot be explained because of dietary changes or other complications.
Your dog becomes unable to digest food using the right digestive mechanisms. No matter what you feed them, diarrhea doesn’t stop.
Loss of appetite
Whether it be home-cooked meals or their favorite treat, you will notice that your dog suddenly does not want to eat their food anymore.
Poor fur quality
This will either be evident if the shedding becomes all too much or your dog has lost its fur quality in terms of shine and general appearance.
Blood in stool
You will notice red or dark violet pigmentation in their stool.
How to tell if there are worms in dog poop
If you see the signs your dog has worms, it is time to send their stool for a checkup. Seeing worms in dog poop is one of the best ways to diagnose properly. You will simply have to scoop a sample of your dog’s poop and keep it in a sealed bag. Once you send the sample to a vet, they test to ascertain whether your dog has worms in its stool. A microscopic image of the stool sample reveals any worms or worm larvae that might be present in your dog’s stool.
Signs of worms in puppies
The symptoms of worms in puppies are more or less the same as the signs of worms in dogs. Since puppies are generally more vibrant and have a more energetic persona, you will soon see a sudden shift in their energy levels. This is the first sign that your puppy has worms in their intestine or has some underlying problems. Besides this, the general lack of appetite and vomiting are also evident signs that your pup needs a visit to the vet’s chamber.
What are the chances of getting worms from your dog?
Worms can only get passed on from one organism to another if the infected stool is somehow consumed. Since the chances of you ingesting the dog feces are almost negative, there is no fear of getting worms from your dog.
Veterinarians who work with infected dogs all the time themselves hardly report getting ill from dog worms. So, you can rest assured. However, whenever playing or handling your dog, make sure you keep the environment nice and clean. This not only helps your dog and acts as a preventative measure for them but also safeguards you.
What to do if my dog has worms
If you see symptoms of dog worms, you must take your dog to the vet immediately. Once the work has been identified, there are many home remedies that you can use.
Some of the most common and effective ingredients you must consider include apple cider vinegar, pumpkin seeds, turmeric, carrot, coconut, and chamomile. However, suppose the problem persists and becomes worse.
In that case, you may need to shift to medicines for your dog after consulting with your veterinarian. While in most cases, worms are treatable, it can prove to be quite fatal if left untreated.
Take care of your dog by keeping it under close observation. If you’re worried about worms in your dog, keep in mind prevention is the way to go.
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