Most find that caring for a pet can be a rewarding experience – but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t any bumps along the way. One issue that you may face as a dog owner are parasites and unfortunately, there are quite a few different ways that they can affect our canine companions.
Hookworms for example, are a type of intestinal parasite that earns its name from a hook-like mouth which is used to latch onto the lining of your pet’s intestinal wall. While this may not sound very pleasant (and it generally isn’t), there are often more serious problems that these parasites can cause than a simple infestation.
What are hookworms?
Generally, these kinds of pests are so small that they can be quite difficult to see with the naked eye, although they tend to be around 2 to 3 mm long. While they may be tiny, they’re often able to ingest large amounts of blood from the vessels where they reside and this in itself can be quite damaging; usually by causing inflammation and in more severe cases, anaemia. While this condition doesn’t pose too much of a risk in humans, it can prove to be fatal in puppies.
With all this in mind, it’s not hard to see why getting rid of these pests and preventing an infection can often be crucial – and luckily, most find that treating a canine with hookworms doesn’t have to be too difficult.
How can a hookworm infection be treated?
If your little one has a hookworm infection, it’s often possible to treat them and remove the worms with little hassle.
One of the most common methods of doing so is using anthelmintic-type medications. Most of them can be given to your pup orally – but this substance usually only eliminates the adult worms.
Because of this, it’s often crucial to treat an infected canine again within 2 to 4 weeks to get rid of the any larvae hookworms that are likely to have grown into adults by this time. While it can be rare, a blood transfusion may be necessary if your canine has a severe case of anaemia.
In most cases, making sure that the hookworms don’t have a chance to hook onto and infect your pet again can be a good idea, too. Fortunately, this can often be done by putting your dog on a monthly preventive routine to protect them from the parasite.
Following the vet’s advice
Generally, when trying to cure a hookworm infection or prevent the pests from getting inside your pup, it’s a wise idea to get in touch with your veterinarian and listen to what they have to say. Often, they’ll be able to prescribe the necessary medication and instructions on how to use it, as well as what you could do to keep the hookworms away from your canine companion as they go about their lives.