All cat owners should discuss a regular program of parasite testing and control with one of our veterinarians. Knowing when to deworm a cat is as important as knowing how to deworm it. Obtain the necessary medication from our hospital. Oral, topical, and injectable medications are available depending on the target parasite. You should never try to medicate with over-the-counter dewormers without checking first with one of the veterinarians, especially with kittens.
What are some internal cat parasites?
Several types of worms can infect cats. The four most common are roundworms, hookworms, tapeworms, and heartworms. Not only do these worms pose a danger to your cat, but many can be spread to other household pets and some, on rare occasions, to humans (those with compromised immune systems and young children are at more risk). For the safety of everyone, in addition to deworming kittens, recently adopted cats, and cats with symptoms, all cat owners should discuss a regular program of parasite testing and control with one of our veterinarians. Knowing when to deworm your cat is as important as knowing how to deworm it.
What are worm infestation symptoms in cats?
Some worms can be seen in the cat’s stool, bedding or in their vomit. Segments can also be seen around your cat’s anus. Some cats may appear bloated “pot bellied” or even be seen scooting their anus on the ground/carpet. Sometimes, they have a hard time gaining weight and worms can even cause intestinal blockages if they are severely infested. Intestinal worms can also cause diarrhea or loose stools.
Do worms affect humans?
Not only do these worms pose a danger to your cat, but some of them can also infect humans and all of them can infect other household pets. You can reduce the risk of parasitic infection to your family by eliminating parasites from pets; restricting access to contaminated areas, such as sandboxes, pet “walk areas,” and other high-traffic areas; and practicing good personal hygiene. Disposing of pet feces on a regular basis can help remove potentially infective worm eggs before they become distributed in the environment and are picked up or ingested by pets or humans.
What is the deworming schedule?
Your cat’s schedule will be based on the lifestyle of your cat. Cats who spend time outside or cats who hunt will require more frequent dewormings and we recommend that these cats be given deworming medication on a regular basis. The treatment is not a one-time deal. It is still important to deworm indoor cats as they can still pick up parasites. Please discuss with one of team members if you are concerned about deworming your cat.
Any deworming medication side effects?
Deworming and other parasite control medications are targeted to affect the parasite (the worm) and not the host (the cat), usually by taking advantage of the unique nervous system of the parasite. Some side effects include diarrhea and vomiting. If your cat shows any other signs, please call our hospital and report any other signs to make sure that your cat is reacting appropriately.