Pet Dewormers and Preventatives

Warmer weather brings a season of critters including intestinal and heart worms. When your pet has intestinal worms, it can be alarming but there is a wide array of treatment options available to rid the worms from your pet. There are also many preventatives for heartworms and intestinal worms, making it easy to keep the infestations at bay. The large amount of different wormers available can be confusing and hard to evaluate. This article, along with your veterinarian’s recommendations, can help you choose between the various de-wormers and preventative treatments against worms.

The right intestinal parasite ID is key:

An accurate identification of the worm is key in treating your pet’s infestation because most products are selective for certain worms. Heartworms will not be visible to you, but your pet will be experiencing serious symptoms such as cough, exercise intolerance, and abnormal lung sounds. These symptoms warrant an immediate visit to a veterinarian and possible hospitalization. When your pet has intestinal worms, you will likely notice the worms in their stools or surrounding fur.  Your veterinarian will probably be able to diagnose the intestinal worm with just a description, but some worms require an exam or stool sample for diagnosis.

Some of the most common worm infestations in dogs and cats include whipworms, heartworms, roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms. Some of these worms are different in appearance and some are alike, making it hard to distinguish between them. This is especially true for the different types of tapeworms. There is a type called dipylidium caninum and they’re transmitted through infected fleas. They still resemble the appearance of other tapeworms, however these tapeworms are not always killed by the same medications as other tapeworms. It is important to talk to your veterinarian about any intestinal or heartworm infestation, because an accurate diagnosis and treatment is necessary to prevent complications and treatment failure.

More importantly, prevention:

The most important principle with worm infestations is preventing them from happening in the first place. There are several ways to keep worms at bay including keeping stools picked up, avoiding infested areas/pets, proper flea control, etc. You can also choose to use a preventative medication. These medications are usually administered monthly to your pet and can prevent and/or treat certain worm infestations. Heartworm preventative medications are necessary in almost all dogs because of the serious nature and frequency of heartworm infestation. All of the worm preventative medications work against heartworms for this reason but the products vary in what other worms they prevent or treat. You should also initiate worm prevention after an active infestation in your pet to reduce the chance of them coming back. Talk to your local veterinarian about specific ways to prevent worm infestations in your pet.

The two tables below display the various de wormers carried at VetRxDirect and what they are labeled to treat. The first table is the treatments we carry for pets with active intestinal worm infestations. Please note there are no heartworm treatment options from VetRxDirect because it’s an infestation requiring immediate and serious medical attention by your veterinarian. The second table shows the preventatives we carry for heartworms and intestinal worms. These tables can be used to supplement your veterinarian’s recommendations for purchasing worm treatments and preventatives.

Oral Dewormers for Active Parasite Infestation in Pets:

Oral Dewormers for Intestinal Parasites in Dogs and Cats

Click Anywhere on Table to Enlarge

Prescription Monthly Preventatives/Dewormers for Heartworms and Intestinal Parasites:

Prescription Monthly Preventatives/Dewormers for Dogs and Cats

Click Anywhere on Table to Enlarge

Take-home message about dewormers:

Prevention of worm infestations is one of the most important components for your pet’s healthy lifestyle. When prevention fails, the most effective way to treat your pet’s worm infestation is to have your veterinarian diagnose and prescribe medications specifically for your pet. OTC medications can be used with veterinarian approval or they may suggest a prescription product for your pet. Once the worms have been rid from your pet, it is important to initiate preventative measures or medications. Your veterinarian is a great resource to contact about preventing a re infestation in your pet.

What dewormers and worm preventatives have you given your pet? Did they work well? Let us know by leaving comments below or by clicking the ‘Reviews’ tab on any the dewormers or preventatives included in this post. Thank you.