VCA Southland Animal Hospital

How can I prevent tapeworms in dogs?

Published: Jan 08, 2013

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All dog owners know dogs will eat items that humans wouldn't touch with a 10-foot pole, but there are certain things that are particularly disgusting you should keep your canine companion far away from since they can cause tapeworms in dogs.

Dogs can pick up a number of different worms when they eat abandoned food that has been in contact with stool residue, and of course, when they eat stool itself. Plus, dog worms may come from raw meat or fleas, according to Animal Planet. Here's how to prevent your dog from getting afflicted with these flat intestinal parasites and the unpleasant dog worms symptoms that accompany them.

Watch what he eats
Some of the main dog worms causes are the things your dog eats. If you take a walk in the woods or another unfamiliar area, you can keep your dog on a leash to make sure he doesn't eat anything that could have fecal residue on it. If you'd like to let your dog run free, just make sure to keep an eye on him.

Raw meat may not seem like something your dog could have access to, but indoor and outdoor garbage cans and trash remnants are all common places he could come across uncooked or spoiled meat. Remember, as repulsive as this smell is to you, it's attractive to your dog and will draw him in for a taste. Always supervise your canine companion when he's outside or off-leash in an unfamiliar place - especially on or after garbage day.

Invest in preventative methods
Aside from questionable food or raw meat, fleas are one of the biggest carriers of dog worms. If your dog has fleas, there's a good chance he also has tapeworms, according to Animal Planet.

That is why flea control for dogs is one of the best ways to prevent both the itchy fleas and tapeworms. VCA Animal Hospitals reports that flea control involves treating the animal as well as the environment if there is an infestation. Otherwise, you can give your dog a periodic preventative flea and tapeworm medication recommended by your veterinarian. Many of these medications are designed to prevent a number of parasites at once. 

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Specialty Care

Sometimes sick or injured pets need the care of a veterinary medical specialist. When that happens, VCA specialty hospitals work closely with the general practitioner veterinarians who refer cases to us in order to provide seamless veterinary care to your pet. When your pet is facing any kind of serious illness or injury, our specialty referral hospitals will provide the compassionate and expert care your beloved pet needs.

Our goal is to make sure that when you and your pet are in need that you have access to board certified specialists who are up to date on the very latest developments in their field. In our state of the art hospitals, our specialists also have access to the most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment tools and techniques from ultrasonography and endoscopy to CAT scans and even MRI.

As part of the VCA family, we have over 83 specialty hospitals across the US and Canada which provide referral specialty care, so there may be one near you. Our specialized services include: behavior, cardiology, critical care, dentistry, dermatology, integrative medicine, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology, rehabilitation, reproduction, and surgery.

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In case of emergency during normal business hours, please call us immediately. If you have an emergency outside of our normal business hours, please contact a local emergency animal hospital.

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