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  • Writer's pictureSusan

Are You Doing It Right? Pet Parasite Control

Updated: Aug 25, 2023

Having a pet brings immense joy and happiness to our lives, but it also comes with responsibilities, including proper parasite control. Keeping our furry friends protected from parasites is crucial for their well-being as well as the safety of our families. In this blog, we'll discuss the importance of pet parasite control and some essential tips to ensure you're doing it right. Parasite control is an essential aspect of pet care that should not be overlooked. Parasites not only cause discomfort and skin issues in pets but can also lead to more severe health problems and even transmit diseases. In this blog, we will discuss the reasons why parasite control is crucial and debunk some common misconceptions. Additionally, we will provide guidelines for determining if your pet has parasites and when and how often to administer parasite treatments.

Skin Problems: External parasites such as fleas and ticks can cause itching, hair loss, and other skin-related symptoms in pets. Proper parasite control helps alleviate these issues and ensures your pet's skin remains healthy and free from infestations. Malnutrition and Vulnerable Immune System: Internal parasites can wreak havoc on your pet's digestive system, potentially leading to intestinal perforation, bile duct obstruction, and bacterial infections. These conditions can cause vomiting, allergies, and other adverse reactions, further compromising their nutrition and immune system. Regular parasite control aids in maintaining your pet's overall health and well-being. Prevention of Transmission: Some parasites not only harm your pets but can also pose a threat to human health. By controlling parasites in your pets, you minimize the risk of these parasites infecting you, your loved ones, and the community at large.

How to Identify Parasites in Your Pets: Symptoms of Internal Parasites: Coughing, diarrhea, vomiting, and anemia are common signs of internal parasite infestation. Symptoms of External Parasites: Excessive scratching or biting of the body, abnormal shedding (not during shedding season), allergic dermatitis, and blood loss anemia may indicate external parasite infestation.

Common Misconceptions about Parasite Control: Can pets be parasite-free if they never go outside? Pets can still be exposed to parasites indoors, such as through their owners' belongings or insects that enter the house. Staying inside does not guarantee protection from parasite infestation. Are vaccines enough to eliminate the need for parasite control? Vaccines are vital for protecting pets against certain diseases but do not prevent parasites. It is crucial to combine regular vaccinations with monthly parasite control methods. Does frequent bathing replace the need for parasite control? Not all parasites are visible to the naked eye, and not all parasites reside on the pet's body surface. Bathing alone cannot effectively control parasites, and dedicated parasite control measures are still necessary. Can a single parasite treatment eliminate all types of parasites? Different parasite control medications target specific types of parasites, both internal and external. Meaning, no single treatment can eradicate all parasite infestations. It is best to follow veterinary guidance for appropriate medication usage. Will giving parasite medication cause visible worm expulsion? Just because you don't see worms doesn't mean there are no parasites present. Regular, monthly parasite treatment is crucial because, without it, infestations could go unnoticed until they become severe.

Parasite Control Recommendations: For Dogs: Begin internal parasite control at 2 weeks of age and external parasite control at 6 weeks of age. For Cats: Start internal and external parasite control at 6 weeks of age or older. Frequency of Parasite Control: Monthly for external parasites (or every three months if the pet is strictly indoors), and every three months for internal parasites. Parasite control is a vital aspect of responsible pet ownership. By regularly treating and preventing parasites, you not only ensure the health and well-being of your beloved pets but also safeguard the welfare of your family and community. Don't let misconceptions misguide you - prioritize parasite control to maintain a healthy and happy life for your furry friends.

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