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What Should a Pet Owner Know About Pinworms?

Pinworms have been a common concern among parents of school-aged children for years. Accidental ingestion or inhalation of the eggs is how people become infected.

Once the eggs are ingested, they mature over a period of four to six weeks. Mature pinworms will move out of the person’s rectum and lay eggs around the anus during periods of rest (usually while a person is sleeping). It is the eggs, and sometimes the movement of the worms, which causes itching in affected people.

Horses can be infected with a different species of pinworm. The lifecycle of the pinworm is similar; the main difference being the much longer period of maturation.

The good news is that pinworms are species specific. Enterobius vermicularis (human pinworm) will only infect humans. Oxyuris equi (horse pinworm) will only infect horses. These parasites cannot be transmitted to dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs or other pets you may have.

Regular deworming of your pet is important because there are parasites they can ingest outside of the home that can make them ill or that can be transmitted to people.

If you have any questions or concerns about parasite prevention, please call our hospital at 204-269-8162.

Written By: Tara Serette, RVT


How to help injured and orphaned wild animals

Below are a few suggestions should you come across injured or orphaned wildlife.  First, you need to determine if the wild animal is indeed injured or abandoned without putting yourself in harm’s way. Try not to have too much contact with the animal or to disturb the surroundings. If you are unsure, it is best that you leave it be and call a wildlife specialist to notify them about the animal and its location. Certain animals like rabbits and deer often leave their young alone for long periods throughout the day. If it appears healthy and well, do not disturb the animal. 

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