Internal parasites such as roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms and whipworm are very common amongst cats and kittens. Many kittens are born with some form of intestinal worms that have been passed on by the mother. These parasites can cause serious health problems, especially in young kittens, but luckily are easy to eradicate with modern preparations. Cats can also be infected with tapeworm by ingesting flea eggs and by hunting and eating their prey.

The owner may notice worms in the cats faeces, or in the case of tapeworms in particular, they may be seen on the hair near to the anal region. Other symptoms may include lethargy, increased appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea, potbelly appearance or weight loss. To be sure which type of worm you are dealing with, your Vet can determine this from a stool sample. The treatment for these internal parasites can be recommended by your Vet as well as the accurate dose to be given.

Some of the Spot On flea treatments also treat most of the roundworm family and can be used once a month. There are total wormers now that are administered on the back of the neck and you can also have treatments in tablet or powder forms. Once your cat or kitten is flea free you need to continue a flea and worming program to keep them this way. There are exceptions to this i.e. if you have a house cat or one that stays close to home who is kept flea free and does not hunt, regular worming would be unnecessary.

It is not advisable to use over-the-counter treatments as they are far less effective than those available from your Vet. Also they more often than not do not have a broad enough spectrum to eradicate all the potential parasites.

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