Intestinal Parasites: What Should You Know?

It is unpleasant to hear that your pet could get an intestinal parasite and likely will sometime in its life. Most pet owners would rather not speak about it; however, it’s essential to understand the basics, as parasites in the gut can cause serious health issues. These are the facts you need to be aware of about intestinal parasites.

What Are Intestinal Parasites?

Intestinal parasites are parasitic worms that live throughout the digestive tract (GI). Roundworms (whipworms), tapeworms, and hookworms are the most prevalent parasites in the intestinal tract; depending on how old your pet is and how severe the problem, the worms can vary in size and cause a variety of diseases.

Signs and Symptoms

Based on the severity of your pet’s illness, its symptoms will differ. When kittens and puppies suffer from roundworms, they typically appear to have a big belly. The disease can be shown by bloody stool, diarrhea, weight loss, and anemia, but pets often don’t exhibit any signs until they’re sick. Some animals show signs of lethargy, dull coat appearance, vomits often, and bloated appearance. Watch for these signs, as they can clearly indicate intestinal parasites.

Because most parasites produce eggs, it is impossible to determine whether your pet is infected by looking for worms. Only by examining feces for larvae can a diagnosis be made. It is best to consult professionals at a vet clinic in Tucson, AZ.

Stage of Infection

Roundworms (hookworms) and tapeworms in rodents can spread if your pet eats other dog feces, or an infected flea. Hookworms create holes in your pet’s skin to lay eggs.

Danger to Pet

Roundworms may cause puppies and kittens to grow slower, and hookworms could cause anemia that can kill them. A parasite infection can trigger swelling and problems within the system of immunity. If your pet already has some health issues, like diabetes and kidney disease, the parasite infection may cause it to worsen. These parasites can stop major organ systems and cause death to your pet when you don’t rid them of them.

Transmittable to Other Pets

Parasites in the digestive tract may be passed on to other animals and people. Because they reside primarily within the digestive tract, the larvae or eggs are passed into the poop. The infective larvae live in the soil that surrounds the feces. This makes it possible for other dogs and children to eat them and get sick accidentally.


Treatment depends on the type of infection and how bad the condition is. Veterinarians can prescribe antibiotics and a drug that eliminates parasites. If your pet has a recurring illness, it will need specific care to ensure it doesn’t get sick again. This is because recontamination from the environment and the infection could happen at any point. Surgery is also an option depending on the severity of the situation. To know more, click here for further information.


Routine deworming and cat and dog vaccinations are the most cost-effective and efficient ways to protect your pet from contracting a parasitic infection that could last for quite a while. Also, keep your dog away from public or busy places like sandboxes, walking paths, and dog parks. As for washing your hands before eating food, not going outdoors barefoot can help you avoid parasites.


It’s not pleasant to think that it is possible that your dog or someone from your family is suffering from intestinal parasites. With any luck, you’ll be better prepared to handle unwanted guests in your pet’s home now that you’ve got the basics. Quickly get your pet to the vet if you think it might be infected. You should contact the vet in your area immediately if you’re concerned about parasites or any infections they may cause. In this way, we’ll be able to ensure that our pets are protected as we defend ourselves.