Worms are one of the things you will need learn to deal with as a cat parent or an aspiring cat parent. There are a number of worms that can attack your cat at any given time.
The most common ones include roundworms, hookworms and tapeworms. Worms are not only a threat to your cat, some of them can also be transferred to humans. Therefore, it is very vital to learn how to protect your cat from them. Find out how to prevent and also treat your cat in case of a worm infestation.
Preventing and controlling worms in cats
The first step you should take to protect your cat from worms is prevention. There are a number of things you can do to prevent worms from attacking your kitty.
Fleas are one of the biggest agents of worms in cats. They carry worms with them and they can transfer them to your cat. Administering the best flea treatment for cats can help you keep fleas at bay.
Make sure you consult your veterinarian in order to get information on the most suitable medication for your cat and also how to administer the medication properly. Brushing your cat’s fur using a flea comb also helps to prevent fleas.
Maintain a clean home
A dirty house is a breeding place for fleas. Clean your house including beddings (both human and cat beddings) to get rid of flea larvae that might have got in. Ensure that the yard remains clean and keep outdoor material out of the house to help prevent a flea infestation.
Keeping your cat indoors
The risks your cat can potentially face when outdoors trumps the fulfilment it gets from a few hours of adventure at your backyard. Indoor cats are healthier and they also live longer. The outdoors exposes your cat to dangers like predators, cars and parasites like worms. If you really have to take your cat outside make sure you supervise it or get a cat harness.
Watch your cat’s diet
Feeding your cat high quality healthy food protects them from fleas. Consult your vet to get a recommendation on the best diet that will give your cat all the nutrients and vitamins necessary to boost your cat’s immunity and attain an optimal health.
Make sure your cat does not consume raw or undercooked meat and if your cat spends time outdoors make sure you watch over her. The dead mice or birds that your cat might find outdoors could infect your cats with worms.
Test the cat’s faeces regularly
Testing your cat’s faeces once or twice a year helps to catch and treat worms early. The frequency of testing increases for outdoor cats because their chances of getting worms are higher. Check out this article on how to check cats for worms.
Protect yourself from infection
Some worms can be transmitted to humans so make sure you protect yourself from worms. Use rubber gloves when handling your cat's litter box and also wash your hands after petting an infected cat.
Isolate infected cats
If you are a cat parent of multiple cats and one of your kitties has worms, isolate her from the rest. Keep the infected cat separate until a veterinarian confirms that it’s free of worms. Make sure the rest of the cats are also tested.
Symptoms of Worms in Cats
- Coughing/difficulty breathing
- Bloody stool and excessive scratching or biting
Treatment of worms in cats
Keeping an eye on the symptoms of worms ensures that the problem is detected early and treatment is commenced immediately. Some cats might not show the signs of worms that’s why testing faeces is very important.
If your cat exhibits the symptoms of worms, contact your veterinarian and make an appointment. Worms need to be treated by a qualified veterinarian so do not attempt to deal with them on your own. Your vet will perform a series of tests to make a diagnosis and if your cat has worms he/she will provide the proper treatment plan.
Purchasing over the counter medication is not advised especially without an official diagnosis. Although over the counter dewormers might work on some worms, it could be harmful when used to treat some type of worms.