Did you know that most dogs and cats will be exposed to and contract parasites such as roundworms and tapeworms at some point in their life? Parasites can be quite common and pose minimal risk as long as your pet is properly treated and managed. Parasite prevention can also go a long way in minimizing any impact on your dog our cat, and thanks to our friends at Trupanion, we have some great tips and information to share with you.
Hunting dogs and cats are at the highest risk of becoming infected from parasites due to their exposure from their prey. Rodents such as mice and rats carry all types of parasites, with some of the most common being roundworms and tapeworms, as well as the much-hated fleas. Many people don’t realize that fleas can also carry tapeworms and be a double whammy for your pets! And if you have children, there’s also a risk of them being exposed by some kinds of parasites so prevention is even more important.
Parasite Prevention Tips
There’s a lot more to preventing parasites than just giving a pill or using a spot-on medication once a month, as there are a lot more parasites out there than you may realize. Parasites can include internal and external kinds, such as the internal tapeworms and roundworms already mentioned, as well as external pests such as fleas and ticks. Heartworms are another big risk that are well known in dogs, but may people don’t realize they can infect cats, too. Ear mites are another parasite that can affect both cats and dogs and cause a host of issues for your pet.
The best way to protect your pet is to have regular visits to your veterinarian. They can help with 6 or 12 month regular visits (depending on the area you live in and the instance of parasites in your specific region) and determine the best plan as well as help with regularly scheduled treatments.
It’s important to understand that while there are a lot of options in over the counter medicines and home and natural remedies, these come with a higher risk. Many over the counter medicines are not effective, and will not offer the same protection for your pet that medicines from your veterinarian will offer. Natural and home remedies can also be incredibly risky, as they are not regulated by any association or organization for use in pets, and can also be ineffective – or worse – and do more harm than good. This is why it is so important to bring your pet to your veterinarian who can prescribe safe, effective parasite prevention and treatment.
For a full guide on parasite prevention tips, what to look for, and things to know, you can read the article about Parasite Prevention by Trupanion. And of course, if you’re in our areas, book your appointment and make sure your pet is protected today!