(07) 5576 0400

Monday - Friday 8:00am - 5:30pm

Saturdays 8:00am - 12:30pm

Knowing the Signs: Worms

Knowing the signs: worms

It’s not a pleasant thought for anyone to imagine that their fur baby has worms. In most cases, you won’t even know about it as the symptoms of these infections are often subtle or don’t show at all.

In fact, many dogs and cats will appear completely normal and healthy when we find roundworm or hookworm eggs in their fecal exams here at Pet Doctors. It often comes as a big shock to pet parents when we tell them the news too.

Light hookworm, roundworm and tapeworm infection will only be evident with a fecal exam and your pet will otherwise seem to be their normal self.

In cases of heavy infection you may notice signs such as:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhoea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss despite eating as usual
  • Visible worms in stool
  • General unhealthy appearance
  • Possible “potbelly” appearance
  • Possible anemia

Sadly, a heavy infection will simply make a pet look sickly.

The Tapeworm

It’s rare for dogs to show signs of a tapeworm, but if the burden on their system is heavy they might vomit up pieces of the worm or experience weight loss despite having a normal amount of food. If you check around their anus it is common that you will see a little white and dried sac. This sac can also be found in bedding or in the stool and is called a proglottid. Scooting should be a big telltale sign as well.

The Roundworm in Humans

Alarmingly, roundworms can be passed to humans from their pets. In humans they can actually cause serious disease, including blindness. These worms produce eggs that are deposited through the faeces and when the animal defecates the eggs are released into soil areas. In some cases pets and humans can become infected by unwashed vegetables, infected meat or even stepping on infected areas. Because of this, children are at most risk because they tend to put everything into their mouths.

Thankfully, stopping an infection in your pet is as simple as using a prevention such as Advocate or Interceptor. If you are unsure which wormer is suitable for your pet please call Pet Doctors on 5576 0400.