Drontal - Quarterly vs Monthly Worming
Worming: When doing the minimum is not enough
Deep cleaning the house, the obligatory garden tidy-up and treating our pets for worm infestations … all jobs we only have to do every few months, right?
Well, not quite. The thing is, the quarterly advice on worming pets isn’t a one-size-fits-all: It’s a minimum guideline.
It’s obvious when you think about it: a big house needs more cleaning than a smaller one, and a garden brimming with delicate flowers and vegetable beds will need more work than a concrete yard.
Likewise, worming once-a-season simply isn’t enough for some cats and dogs. Read on to find out if your pet is at high-risk of intestinal worms – you may be surprised!
Intestinal worms 101
Roundworm, tapeworm, hookworm and whipworm are parasites which can be found in the great British outdoors.
They’re often swallowed by our pets when grooming, eating infected meat, rodents, faeces, water or soil, and can be passed through mother’s milk or in the uterus to puppies and kittens.
Once inside, these invaders may swim free in the intestine or attach themselves to the intestinal lining via hooks or suckers, growing and living off our furry friends.
While there are often no symptoms, intestinal worms can be irritating and cause your pet to scoot, rub their bottoms across the floor or lick their behinds more than usual as they try to scratch the itch.
They can also become bloated or pot-bellied and – in the case of puppies and kittens – experience diarrhoea and sickness.
In more serious cases, a heavy infection can cause weight loss or malnourishment and can lead to anaemia, constipation and even more serious complications.
Are you at risk?
If your pet hasn’t had worm treatment, then the short answer is that they are very much at risk!
What’s more, roundworm can pass to humans, particularly young children, in the form of toxocarosis infection. This can cause headaches, stomach pain, coughs, rashes, tiredness, vision problems and can lead to blindness in the worst cases.
Unfortunately, this parasite has a lifecycle which can be as short as 30 days, which means that even after treatment new adult worms can be present within a month.
This is why the European Scientific Counsel of Companion Animal Parasites (ESCCAP) recommends quarterly worming of pets as a minimum.
For high-risk pets, ESCCAP recommends monthly worming.
High risk cats and dogs may include those that do any of the following:
- Eat a raw unprocessed diet, such as raw meaty bones, hunks of raw meat and raw organs
- Hunt or scavenge, meaning they catch or play with wildlife like birds, rabbits and mice
- Walk over farmers’ land with livestock – this could be as casual as a countryside stroll with your dog or within the roaming territory of your cat
- Children, who are more likely to get toxocarosis infection from roundworm
- Adults who have weaker immune systems because of illnesses or chronic disease like diabetes, cancer, HIV or because of the medicines they are taking (as above)
Enjoy the great outdoors with peace-of-mind
Whatever your lifestyle, optimum protection from intestinal worms and peace-of-mind is as simple as a monthly tablet. By treating your pet with a quality wormer, such as Drontal, clinically-proven to kill every kind of intestinal worm commonly found in UK cats and dogs, you can rest assured you’re doing the best for your pet, and your loved ones.