Dog Worms or Canine Worms are one of the most common health problems that your doggo can face. Dog Worms can cause a variety of health problems in dogs. If left untreated, worms can damage your Dog’s internal organs causing life-threatening illness and death.
Types of Worms that Affect Dogs
There are Five types of worms that can affect your doggo.
Roundworms can cause serious infection in Dogs and Puppies. They are usually spread through Feces or During Pregnancy from Mama Dog to Pups or Nursing (Via Milk).
Roundworms absorb all the nutrients of the host making them weak. In puppies, Roundworm infection can be Fatal.
Prescription Medicines and Over-the-counter Deworming Medicines are Highly effective in getting rid of the Roundworms.
Hookworms live mainly in the small intestine and feed on the Blood of their host. The infection causes weakness and malnutrition and can be life-threatening for young puppies.
Hookworm infection is spread through the skin or eating infected animal meat (one which is infected with hookworm). Puppies can get infected from their mothers.
Common Deworming medicines are highly effective in treating Hookworms infection. Young puppies may require additional treatment for malnutrition.
Heartworms are the most dangerous. They can’t be easily detected. Heartworms are spread through Mosquito bites. They can grow up to 14 inches and Lives in the Heart and arteries of the Dog.
Heartworms affect the Normal functioning of the Heart and can cause Blood clotting. If left untreated, the infection can cause the death of the Dog.
Infected Dog shows Troubled Breathing, Cough and may experience other symptoms. 2-3 Dosage of Arsenic-based Drug injection along with a month of rest is necessary for an infected dog.
Whipworms live in the intestinal area and feed on the Blood of their host (dog). A large number of whipworms can cause Bloody diarrhea in dogs. Infection is transmitted mostly through contaminated soil.
Heartworm medicines are effective in treating Whipworms. Oral Dewormer is required for permanent elimination of whipworms.
Tapeworms live in the intestine where they absorb some of the nutrients. Tapeworm is made up of several small segments, each about the size of a rice grain.
These small segments are visible through naked eyes in the feces of the infected dog and sometimes even visible near the anus.
The infection is mostly caused by Fleas, which carry eggs of the tapeworms.
Treatment involves Tablets or injections depending on the severity of the infection.
Symptoms of Worms in Dogs
Worms like Tapeworms are easier to spot while some worms like heartworms are not easily detected because of the subtle symptoms. However, here are the 11 Primary Symptoms of Worms in Dogs:
This is an advanced stage symptom of heartworms in dogs. However, often seen in the case of Hookworms and Roundworms.
Dogs with worms often through up. Roundworms often show up in the Dog’s Vomit.
Diarrhea is one of the common symptoms of Worms. Hookworms infection can cause Bloody Diarrhea in Dogs.
4. Lethargy & Low Energy
If a dog is showing lethargic behavior than normal. It can be a sign of worm infestation.
5. Change in Appetite
A dog with worms will show signs of increased hunger (if the worm is stealing his food) or a Loss of Appetite because of worm infestation.
Increased Hunger can also be the Sign of Diabetes in Dogs.
6. Bloating or Pot Bellied
This is commonly seen in Young puppies who may have contracted the infection from their mom.
A dog infected with Tapeworms or Whipworms tend to lose weight rapidly.
8. Dull Coat
A healthy dog has a shiny coat. If your dog’s coat is becoming dull despite bath and shampoo, he might have picked up some worms. Get him checked today.
9. Itching and Skin irritation
Severe infestation of worms can make your dog itch a lot with visible signs of skin irritation.
10. Visible Worms in Feces
Worms like tapeworms can be easily seen in the feces and around the anus of the infected dog. They look like grains of rice. Roundworms can also be seen in the stool of the dog.
11. Rubbing its Bottom on the Ground
Often called as “Scooting”, this can be a sign of worms in the dog. He may be doing this in order to get some relief from the itching.
Most Canine worms are easy to treat. If you suspect worms in your dog, visit your vet today. He will prescribe medication based on the diagnosis.
As a precautionary measure, you should deworm your dog every three or four months. You can ask your vet for the recommended medication.