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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Worms, Whipworms View In Cats

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Condition Overview

The adult whipworm lives in the large intestine where it fastens to the wall of the gut and feeds on blood. This worm is 2-3 inches long, is threadlike in shape and thicker at one end. This shape give it the appearance of a whip.

Symptoms

Whipworms can cause acute, chronic, or intermittent diarrhea in dogs. This stool is typically mucoid and bloody. Dogs with heavy loads of the worms can experience weight loss, fail to thrive, or anemia.

Causes

Whipworms are acquired when a dog eats something that has been in contact with contaminated soil or infective larvae

Diagnosis

The female lays fewer eggs than other worms and there are long periods during which eggs are not shed. This may make fecal analysis difficult or unreliable.

Treatment

Panacur, Drontal Plus, Telmintic, and Vercom Paste are all effective against whipworms. It is, however, difficult to attain high drug concentrations in the colon where the whipworms reside, making it difficult to completely eliminate the infestation. Follow up dewormings are common 3 weeks, and again 3 months after the initial deworming.

Prevention

The drug Interceptor will control and prevent whipworms. Whipworm eggs can remain infective in the environment for up to 5 years. Frequent re-infection is common in public parks and backyards where the ground has been heavily contaminated with whipworm eggs.

It is important to remove stools from the yard daily to limit the instance of whipworms. Household bleach diluted to 1:32 is effective in the disinfection of concrete and gravel runs, however, it may be necessary to replace the gravel completely to eradicate the whipworm population.

Support

Please contact your veterinarian if you suspect your pet may be infested with whipworms.

Show Sources & Contributors +

Sources

The Howell Book Of Dogs

Publisher: Wiley Publishing Inc, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Author: Liz Palika

Dog Bible

Publisher: BowTie Press, 2005

Website: http://www.bowtiepress.com/bowtie/

Authors: Kristin Meuh-Roe, Jarelle S. Stein

Dog Owners Home Veterinary Handbook

Publisher: Wiley Publishing, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Authors: Debra M. Eldredge, Liisa D. Carlson, Delbert G. Carlson, James M. Giffen MD

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