A simple way you can help keep your pet healthy is by protecting him or her against parasites. Heartworms, fleas, ticks, and other internal and external parasites are much more than just pests; they can cause life-threatening conditions in your pet and can even cause severe, potentially fatal, health problems for you and your family.
Parasites can live internally, such as roundworms, or externally, such as fleas and ticks. The most common intestinal parasites in cats and dogs are roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms. Roundworms are a zoonotic disease, meaning they can be passed on to humans- children and people with compromised immune systems are particularly susceptible.
Puppies and kittens are also especially susceptible to parasitism due to their weakened immune system, and easy re-infection through their environment and nursing.
It is easier and much more cost-effective to prevent parasites than it is to treat them. Your doctor can work with you to develop a prevention and treatment plan specially to meet your pet’s lifestyle and needs, as well as provide expert advice on keeping your whole household safe from parasitic infection. Talk with your doctor to learn about implementing the 3 step program:
OBSERVE: Keep an eye out for changes in your pets behavior, appetite, and water consumption. Some symptoms to look for are:
Worms in feces or vomit
General poor condition/ lethargy
Routine testing is always recommended even if no signs are present. Keep in mind animals instinctively hide signs of illness.
PREVENT: it is important to have your pet tested annually by providing your vet with a fecal sample.
PROTECT: Along with prescribed prevention, follow these tips to help further protect your pets and yourself at home!