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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Worms, Threadworms (Strongyloides)

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Condition Overview

Threadworms are short round worms (2mm long) that live in the small intestines. Threadworms are found in the southern United States and Gulf Coast areas. Both eggs and larvae are are passed in the feces. Larvae become infective and gain entrance by wither ingestion or directly penetrating the skin.

Symptoms

Threadworms are mainly a problem for puppies, where infected puppies can suffer from a profuse watery or bloody diarrhea that can be fatal. Pneumonia may occur as the larvae migrate through the lungs.

Causes

Threadworm larvae become infective and gain entrance by wither ingestion or directly penetrating the skin.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is obtained through fecal analysis performed by a vet.

Treatment

A 5 day course of Panacur is the treatment of choice. Re-treatment in 30 days is recommended. Ivermectin has also been used effectively, although it is not labeled for this use.

Prevention

Dogs can readily infect humans. A threadworm infection in humans is a debilitating disease accompanied by chronic diarrhea. Infected puppies must be isolated until treated and cured. Extreme care must be taken to avoid human contact with the contaminated feces of dogs infected with threadworms.

Support

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

Show Sources & Contributors +

Sources

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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