Dear VetBabble: Does My Puppy Need an Additional Deworming Treatment?
Dear VetBabble, I recently adopted a puppy that was found as a stray, and I’ve had to start his vaccinations from the beginning. He was dewormed a week ago, but I’m still noticing worms in his stool. Should he receive another dose of dewormer? And should I have my vet perform a fecal test to identify the type of worms and make sure the dewormer is the right one?
The Importance of Proper Deworming
First off, congratulations on your new furry family member! It’s essential to address the issue of worms in your puppy, as this can impact not only his health but also the health of other pets and people in your household. So it’s great to see that you’re attentive to this concern.
Deworming your puppy is a crucial part of their overall healthcare, and as you’ve noticed, sometimes just one deworming treatment isn’t enough to do the job. Worms can cause various issues and discomfort for your puppy, such as anemia, malnutrition, weight loss, and diarrhea. That’s why worming your pet is so important to their health.
Common Parasites in Puppies and Deworming Guidelines
There are several parasites commonly found in puppies, such as roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, tapeworms, and coccidia. The deworming medication used and the treatment schedule may differ depending on which parasite is present. To know more about this, you can refer to our article on Simplifying Fleas, Ticks, and Worms.
As a general rule of thumb, puppies should receive their first deworming treatment between 2 to 3 weeks of age and continue to be dewormed every two weeks until they’re 12 weeks old. Following this, deworming should be done every month until the puppy reaches 6 months of age. After that, you can switch to a regular deworming schedule as recommended by your vet, which is generally every three months.
In your puppy’s case, since he was found and you’ve had to start his shots from scratch, it’s possible that he might require more frequent deworming treatments in the beginning. This will ensure the worms in his system are eliminated effectively.
Performing a Fecal Test and Consulting Your Vet
It’s always a good idea to consult with your veterinarian regarding any concerns you have about your puppy’s health. In the case of worms, they’ll be able to perform a fecal test to determine the specific type of parasites present. This will help them prescribe the best deworming medication and determine if additional treatments are required. You can learn more about the common worms in dogs and how to treat them in our article, How to Prevent and Treat Worms in Dogs.
Also, since the fecal test only detects certain kinds of worms, it’s essential to be vigilant for symptoms of coccidiosis: diarrhea (often containing blood and mucus), loss of appetite, vomiting, and weight loss. If you notice any of these symptoms in your puppy, be sure to consult your vet at once. Coccidia infection in dogs and puppies can be severe, and you can read more about this here: Coccidia in Dogs and Puppies: What It Is and How to Treat It.
In conclusion, it’s essential for pet owners, especially those with puppies, to be proactive about their pets’ health. Regular deworming, fecal tests, and keeping an eye on their symptoms will help keep your puppy happy, healthy, and free of parasites. Always consult your veterinarian for guidance tailored specifically to your pet’s needs. We wish you and your puppy absolute health and happiness!