How can I tell if my dog has worms?
Signs to look out for to tell you that your dog has worms
- Visible worms or eggs in faecal matter – This is the most common way to confirm that your dog has worms and this is by seeing it in their poo after they have gone toilet. Whether it is dead or alive is irrelevant. However, not all kinds of worms are visible in faecal matter to the naked eye. This does not mean that because you don’t see them that they are not there
- Visible worms in crawling around in your dog’s hair, or gathered in the area around your dog’s bum – Tapeworms, in particular, will look to the eye like small moving segments, which later dry out and look like dry grains of rice.
- Scratching and rubbing the bum on the ground or against furniture or anything they can find – if your dog shows signs of itchiness around the bum area, it may be irritated by worms in the area. However, this could also be due to problems with full anal glands which are totally unrelated to worms. If you are not sure, treat for both.
- Vomiting with visible worms – if your dog has worms, you may also see them in your dog’s vomit. Worms will induce vomit and make your dog very sick.
- Bloated stomach or belly – This is another common symptom of worms, often seen in puppies who receive an infection of worms from their mother. Your puppy may look cute and fat but are actually taken over by worms.
- Weakness, increased appetite, constant hunger, weight loss – If your dog has worms, the worms are pinching your dog’s nutrition. If you notice that you are feeding your dog correctly and the correct amounts and they still constantly look for food and look weak and hungry, or are even losing weight you can more than likely suspect a worm infestation.
Diarrhea, principally with blood in it.
Why your dog might have worms
- Newly born puppies – roundworm eggs can form cysts in adult dogs that remain undeveloped. These eggs cant be removed by medication and you will have to wait until the cyst develops. When a female dog is pregnant, these inactive eggs will activate and get goin and infect the new puppies. Roundworms will also be passed to newborn puppies through their mother’s milk.
- Contact with infected dirt – roundworm eggs and hookworm larvae can reside in dirt. If you dog comes in contact with infected dirt, your dog may get worms.
- Fleas – young tapeworms can reside in fleas. If your dog groom him or herself and by accident swallow any fleas or flea eggs, your dog will ingest tapeworms and be infected this way.
- Hunting or eating wildlife – wild animals may carry worms, including tapeworms residing in fleas on wild animals. If your dog is a keen hunter or like to eat wildlife, your dog may also swallow worms.
A good all rounder worm tablet once every three months for adult dogs.
Puppies need to be wormed from 2 weeks every two weeks until three months of age.
From three months of age every month until they reach six months.
Pups under 3 months should get special puppy wormer.