Worms in Dogs – Types, How Dogs Get Worms, Signs, Treatment and Prevention

Worms in Dogs

The idea of worms in our pet dogs is constantly unpleasant. No one wishes to consider creepy crawlies infesting their pet’s internal organs. But comprehending the threats, symptoms, and treatment options for worms in canines is a fundamental part of accountable pet dog ownership. There are 5 main types of worms that typically affect domestic dogs: roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms, whipworms, and heartworms.


Roundworms are a few of the most typical digestive tract worms in pets There are two kinds of roundworms in dogs: Toxocara canis (T. canis) and Toxascaris leonina. T. canis is more common in young puppies and can also be transmitted to human beings.

Roundworm larvae will at first infect a pet’s digestive system but can burrow their way into other bodily tissues and organs. As Toxocara canis larvae develop, they will move onto the lungs to develop and after that then approximately the airway prior to being spent and swallowed again, re-entering the intestinal tract to finish their lifecycle. Toxascaris leonina does stagnate around the body and has a far easier lifecycle.



Tapeworms reside in the small intestine, grabbing onto its wall with six small rows of teeth to absorb nutrients as food is digested. They are long– half a foot or more in length– and flat in look. Unless the dog is incredibly active, the parasite does not harm the pet, as there are a lot of nutrients to serve both host and tapeworm. When excreted, the worm generally splits into sections that appear like little grains of rice.

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Hookworms are more common in dogs than in cats. They fasten to the wall of the small intestine and suck blood, and they are a serious danger to dogs. Hookworms are really small, thin worms with hook-like mouthparts that they use to attach to the digestive wall. Adult canines get hookworms from contact with the larvae in stool-contaminated soil (the larvae can burrow through the skin) or from ingesting larvae from the environment or in a prey animal’s tissues.


Whipworms are a kind of worm in pets that lives in the cecum (the start of the large intestinal tract) and colon, where they pass their eggs into the dogs’ feces. Dogs get whipworms from consuming an infested compound, which can include soil, food, water, feces, or animal flesh. Whipworms do not always trigger signs in moderate cases. But in serious cases, they can result in swelling, weight reduction, diarrhea, and sometimes anemia.


Of all of the kinds of worms in dogs, the most worrisome– and the most avoidable– are heartworms. Mosquitoes transmit the parasite, and since avoiding mosquitoes is nearly difficult in a lot of places, veterinarians advise routine heartworm preventatives to keep your dog safe. Heartworms grow and increase within the heart, causing severe lung illness, cardiac arrest, other organ damage, and eventually causing death if left without treatment.

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This worm (Angiostrongylus vasorum) is a bit different; it resides in the canine’s capillary and impacts their lungs. Dogs can pick up this worm by consuming slugs and snails.


How dogs get worms?
  • Both roundworms and hookworms can permeate the uterus and can therefore be transmitted to be born pups, along with to young puppies through their mother’s milk. This is an extremely common route of infection for roundworms therefore it’s very essential to ask your veterinarian’s advice about worming pups.


  • Another significant source of infection of roundworms, hookworms, and whipworms for pets is through infected soil due to the fact that the parasites reside in the gut and shed eggs in the faeces. Dogs usually end up being contaminated while grooming themselves and consuming polluted dirt in their fur. It is therefore vital that pet dog owners always clean up their animals.
  • Tapeworms are the only digestive parasite that can be passed on through infected fleas and cannot be contracted in any other way. A dog will just be contaminated if it consumes a flea carrying tapeworm eggs.
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Signs of Dogs with Worms

While each parasite impacts canines differently, there are some basic warning symptoms that dog owners need to know. Intestinal tract worms might trigger:

  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach discomfort
  • Weight reduction
  • Throwing up
  • Poor coat look
  • Pot-bellied appearance
  • Lethargy
  • Dehydration
  • Shortages in nutrition and anemia
  • Digestive tract blockage or pneumonia
  • Blood in the stool (either bright red or darker purple).

Heartworms can likewise be accompanied by respiratory signs such as coughing, workout intolerance, weak pulse, weight loss, abdominal distension, and in extreme cases, labored breathing, pale gums, and death.


Treatment and Prevention
  • It is important that you provide your pet dog with regular de-worming treatment, particularly if you have children. Pups are especially high threat as they can have high levels of infection.
  • Constantly consult your vet on the best treatment for your dog. There are numerous types of deworming medication readily available which prevent and treat some or all kinds of digestive parasites together. These can be administered by injection, tablet, or through spot-on treatments.
  • A single treatment frequently won’t totally eliminate all worms in your family pet’s body. In cases of Toxocara canis roundworms and hookworms, fresh larvae can enter the intestinal tract after deworming– so repeat treatment will be necessary to treat the infection.