Learn how hookworms affect a dog from top veterinarians near you
Like tapeworms and roundworms, hookworms are parasites that live in the digestive system of your dog, most probably the intestine. These are hook-shaped, as the name indicates, and roughly a penny size. These hookworms attach to the lining of the intestinal wall of your dog and suck its blood. The eggs of these worms are ejected into the digestive tract and passed out of the body through your dog’s feces.
Once out of the body, the larvae hatch from the eggs of the hookworms and starts living in the soil. These larvae can now get into your dog’s body simply by penetration through their skin or while dogs lick or ingest dirt.
How Do Hookworms Affect Your Dog?
- Hookworms are small creatures that suck blood from inside the body and therefore cause internal blood loss. They are a serious risk for dogs, especially in young puppies who may find it difficult to survive with blood loss without transfusions. However, some other animals may show more chronic symptoms, and the pet may get diarrhea and extreme weight loss.
There are several other signs that the dog owners should be aware of so that they can judge an infection before it creates a problem for your furry. These symptoms include:
- Pale gums
- Weight loss
- Diarrhea containing blood
- Poor growth
- Itchy Paws
If you suspect that your canine is infected with hookworms, you should call or visit your veterinarian to schedule an appointment for further diagnosis and effective treatment.
How To Prevent Your Dog From Getting Infected To Hookworms?
- To prevent your dog from hookworms as well as other intestinal parasites, it is important that you keep your dog’s environment and surroundings clean and don’t let your dog be exposed to contaminated areas.
Regular prevention measures should be considered. Newborn puppies are more prone to hookworms that’s why they should be kept under observation most frequently. Puppies should be treated and checked for hookworms at the age of 2, 4, 6, and 8 weeks. Your veterinarian would recommend a deworming medication.
- Many other preventatives include using drugs to prevent and treat infections, so no additional deworming medications may be required. For deep examination, fecal examinations are conducted 2 to 4 times during the first year of life and 1 to 2 times in adults in one year. Mothers feeding their puppies should also be treated along.
Can Hookworms Infect Humans?
- You may be concerned about hookworm infection in your dog and sometimes even cats, but you should be careful for yourself and your kids too. While adult hookworms do not infect humans, but the larvae can penetrate into you or your child’s body. This is probably possible when lying on the infected area or near the soil, allowing hookworm to burrow under your skin, causing uncomfortable itching and rash commonly knows as ground itch.
You should be careful about hookworm infections as they can be dangerous for humans. The larvae that have intruded inside the body can cause damage to internal organs such as the eyes, causing blindness and infections, and other complications. However, these conditions can be avoided by preventing contact on the skin with soil directly. Cleaning your body and washing your hands frequently can help prevent the infection.
However, if you perceive any signs of hookworm infection in your dog or anyone else handling them, then reach out to the best and reliable vets at Autumn Trials And Veterinary Centre as soon as possible.