Protect Your Pet From Intestinal Parasites
Many of you have called in regarding Dr. Oz’s recent segment on Intestinal Parasites.
With all of the statistics concerning intestinal parasites in dogs and cats (over 18% of dogs and cats tested positive for some form of intestinal parasite in the Tri-state area in 2009!), it is natural to have questions about what to do to protect yourself, your pet, and your family.
Many worms are zoonotic, which means that it IS possible for humans to become infected, however, good hygiene, awareness, and vigilant testing and deworming can help to significantly decrease the risk.
What to look for:
Symptoms manifested by pets that are infected with internal parasites can vary, and depend on a pet’s age, nutritional status, parasite load, duration of infestation, etc. One of the most common symptoms of internal parasitism is diarrhea. Other symptoms include poor appetite, lethargy, coughing, and abdominal distention. Some pets don’t show any symptoms while others can become very ill, or even die from their infestation.
How to prevent them:
Because so many pets can have worms and remain asymptomatic, University Animal Hospital recommends regular fecal tests (at least twice a year) for all of our patients,
As a preventative, we strongly urge all parents to keep their pet on a year round Heartworm preventative, such as Sentinel for dogs, which, in addition to preventing heartworm disease, also prevents and controls flea infestations, and protects against intestinal worms. For cats we recommend Revolution to prevent heartworm disease, and for use as a broad spectrum dewormer.
Frontline for dogs and cats is another important part of your pet