A regular flea prevention and worming routine is important in keeping your pet fit and healthy. Your pet can encounter worms and skin parasites anywhere out on a walk where other animals have been or even in your own garden.
What worms are out there?
There are many different types of worms that can infect your dog and cat in the UK or if your pet travels abroad with you.
The main species in the UK are roundworm, tapeworm, whipworm, hookworm, heartworm and lungworm. Some of these can be potentially harmful to humans as well, namely roundworm and tapeworm.
How does my pet get worms?
Most transmission of worms is where the eggs or larvae are shed in the faeces of infected animals and are ingested by your pet as they graze or snuffle in the grass.
Once inside the pet, these mature into adult worms, which shed more eggs, and so the cycle continues. Worm eggs can also be brought into the house on shoes and transmission of some worms is via an intermediate host such as snails or fleas so indoor pets can be affected too.
What skin parasites should I be concerned about?
Cats and dogs can be affected by a number of skin parasites including fleas, lice, mites that live on the skin or in ears and ticks. These can be contracted from other affected pets, from wildlife ie foxes, or from the environment (this includes your home if one of your pets has brought in fleas!).
Signs can include itching (but not in all cases), hair loss, head shaking, reddening of the skin or even sightings of the parasites on your pet.
For further advice on any of the above parasites and treatments either talk to your vet, book an appointment for a FREE nurse clinic or phone for advice on 01722 412211.