Deworming is an essential part of owning a dog. Dogs are constantly getting their noses in a pile of mess. They are also much more likely to get worms from fleas and ticks in dogs. Most of these worms are contagious to humans and therefore it’s very important to deworm your dog often.
Dogs are often affected by the same worms as we are. Hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms whipworms etc affect both dogs and humans.
Why Is It Important To Deworm Your Dog?
Dogs tend to have strong immunity and, in most cases, it’s hard to tell if your dog has worms. In severe cases, worms can cause anaemia, a weak immune system, weight loss, lethargy, loss of appetite.
Heartworms are the most dangerous type of worms that affect your dog’s heart and lungs. If they are not removed on time, it can cause severe damage to their heart, lungs and can even cause death. Heartworms are very common in USA but recently dogs in South and West of India have also been diagnosed with heartworms. Treating heartworms also takes immense time and stamina and the best way to prevent is by deworming your dog on time.
Deworming keeps our dogs safe from these nasty worms and allows them to live a healthy life.
When Should I Start Deworming My Dog?
Puppies get worms from their mother as soon as they are born. They also get worms from their mother’s milk and it’s usually hard to tell if they have any worms at all. This is why it is necessary to deworm them from a very early age.
Puppies are usually dewormed for the first time when they are two weeks old. The medication can only kill live worms. In a few weeks, the eggs hatch and they get worms once again. So, as puppies, they must be dewormed often.
Doctors advise you to deworm your dogs once every two weeks till they are 8 weeks old. From 2 months to 6 months they are usually dewormed once a month and from 6 months onwards, they are dewormed 4 times a year.
How Do I Know If My Dog Has Worms?
Usually, it’s hard to tell if your dogs have worms. They tend to live perfect lives even with a few worms in their gut. But if your dog is getting sick because of too many worms, they may vomit worms or appear lethargic, they lack interest in play and food, you may even notice worms in their stool. The worms are usually white and resemble rice.
If your dog is not responding to deworming medication, your doctor may ask you to provide a stool sample. With a sample, doctors can tell which worms are in their gut and treat them accordingly.
For severe infections, doctors may order a blood transfusion and/or surgery. However, in most cases, you can prevent this scenario by deworming your dogs on time and taking care of flea and tick infestations.
Common Deworming Mistakes We Make
Of course, deworming is vital for them, but if we don’t administer it properly, all your efforts will go to waste. So, let us look at some common mistakes we make when we give our dogs deworming tablets.
1. Not Administering Tablets Properly
This is the most common mistake with deworming tablets. As a pet parent, we may forcefully insert the pill without knowing that our dog has spit it out when we weren’t looking. If we fail to push it down their food pipe, they may choke on the tablet and spit it out.
Deworming tablets often have a non-flavoured coat which they don’t like. Which is why you need to be sure that you are inserting the pill properly. Or else, they will spit it out. Many pet parents train their dogs to stay still when they are giving them a deworming tablet.
Many companies provide deworming syrups which are flavoured to your dog’s liking. Ask your vet if your dog can get a flavoured syrup or something they are willing to eat. This will solve almost all deworming related problems.
Dogs are given deworming tablets based on their weight. It is essential to check their weight and consult their doctor. The vet will give you the right dosage and decide if they need to change the anti-parasitic medication.
3. Deworming All Pets At Different Time
Deworming only one pet at a time or all pets at different times also makes it difficult to manage worms in the gut. Worms recuperate very quickly and it is not easy to manage worms if even one dog has a few in his/her gut. Therefore it is necessary to deworm all your dogs and cats together.
4. Not Medicating On Time
Doctors are strict about deworming medication and there is a reason for them to be. Worms are pesky little creatures and they are quick to copulate. They usually don’t die in a single sweep. Failing to medicate your dog at the right time can prove futile and even harm your dog.
So here are a few simple things you must keep in mind if you want to keep your dogs far and away from worms. Deworming is absolutely necessary for dogs of all shapes, sizes and lifestyles. Always make sure to give them antiparasitic medications on time to avoid any future problems pertaining to worms.
So, here are a few ways to keep your dogs safe from worms. After all, we cannot always control what they pick up from the floor but we can control how it affects them. Deworming them and keeping them safe from fleas and ticks will help them live longer and happier lives.