If your cat lives an adventurous outdoor lifestyle, they should have a fecal sample tested for intestinal parasites at least once a year. Be sure to inform the veterinarian of your cat’s normal activities so that we can provide them with the necessary parasite preventatives and treatments year-round.
Kittens should be tested for intestinal parasite and dewormed regularly for the first four months of life. The veterinarian will review a deworming program for your kitten during the first vet visit.
What are some types of internal parasites found in cats?
Intestinal parasites are common in outdoor cats. Common intestinal parasites include: Round worms, Tape Worms, Coccidia and Giardia.
If my cat has worms, what symptoms should I look for?
Often, you will not see any sign that your cat has worms. Cats may or may not experience vomiting and/or diarrhea. This is why we check a fecal sample for the microscopic eggs at a laboratory. For tapeworm infestations, you may see small rice grain size segments of the worm being shed in your cat’s feces. For any patients with diarrhea, a fecal parasite test is recommended along with a physical examination with the veterinarian.
Are worms dangerous to humans?
The eggs of intestinal parasites are shed in the feces. Round worm, giardia and toxoplasmosis are all transmissible to humans through various routes into the body. Small children are more susceptible to infection.
If your cat is diagnosed with a parasite infection, we will explain the necessary cleaning to prevent contamination of your home environment. Be sure to thoroughly clean up any areas where fecal material is found and keep small children away from these areas.
For any concerns about human parasitic infections, please contact your local public health department and/or family doctor for advice.
Are there any side effects from deworming medication?
Veterinary prescribed deworming medications are very safe, and side-effects are extremely rare. We do not recommend the use of over-the-counter deworming products from pet supply stores.