Worms are one of the most common and sometimes dangerous health issues present for dogs today. Fortunately, they are also very easily treated. In order to treat properly, however, you must be able to tell if your dog has worms. There are several ways your dog can get worms, and several ways you can treat them successfully.
How do dogs get worms?
All dogs are susceptible to getting worms, and can get them in a number of different ways. Roundworms are one of the most common parasites. Newborn puppies often have roundworms, because they're particularly susceptible to these parasites. They often get them from their mothers when they nurse or while still in utero; their mothers have usually contracted them through the feces of other affected dogs.
Parasites like tapeworm and heartworm are also very common in dogs, because they are contacted through flea or mosquito bites.
How can you tell if your dog has worms?
You can often see that your dog has worms. To see if you can visually spot them, check the following:
• Fur surrounding the rectum
Common symptoms your dog may exhibit if it has worms:
• Bloating or distended abdomen
• Weight loss
• Blood in fecal matter
• Rubbing or scratching the rear end to try to alleviate the itch caused by the infection
• "Scooting" behavior, where your dog drags its bottom across the carpet to relieve irritation
Whenever your dog exhibits any of the above symptoms, make sure you take it to the vet immediately. The vomiting and other symptoms may be caused by worms or they may be caused by other health problems, but it's important to get the problem treated regardless. Parasites can cause intestinal harm and infection that may result in lasting damage.