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The lowdown on worms for cat and dogs

Published on 1 Sep 2021

Cute Welsh corgi dogs and british longhair cat on sofa at home

Dogs and cats can get worms through eating worm eggs off the ground (they are passed in infected pets poop), through an infected mum passing them to her babies through pregnancy or her milk, or via ingestion of fleas (carrying tapeworm).

Intestinal worms are in four main groups:

  1. Roundworms
  2. Hookworms
  3. Whipworms
  4. Tapeworms

These are treated and prevented with an all wormer tablet or a topical spot on according to their weight.

Worming schedule for kittens and puppies through to adults:

  • 2 weeks – 12 weeks old: 2 weekly
  • 12 weeks – 6 months old: 1 monthly
  • 6 months old and onwards: 3 monthly (or monthly, see below)

Note re topical spot ons: these often have flea control &/or heart worm prevention included so they need to be given monthly. They don’t treat for tapeworm so you still need to give your buddy a tapewormer, rather than an all wormer.

How often should I worm my cat? 

How often should I worm my dog?

Together with medication to treat and prevent worms, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk of your pet getting worms in the first place. This is really important as intestinal worms not only cause illness to your fur kid, they can be a potential health hazard for humans too:

  1. Regular poop collection- back yard (minimum weekly) and litter tray (daily)
  2. Watch your dog at parks- try to stop the eating of poop
  3. Wash hands after touching the animals
  4. Don’t let pets lick your kid's faces!
Dr. Claire Jenkins VetChat founder & CEO

Dr. Claire Jenkins

VetChat founder & CEO, BVSc (Hons), MANZCVS (SAM)

Claire has spent the past 15 years caring for animals as a Small Animal Veterinarian in the UK, Melbourne and is now based in Sydney. She is passionate about early intervention and how easy access to the right advice drives better health outcomes for pets. Claire’s a life-long animal lover, passionate problem solver and adorer of her gorgeous Kelpie ‘Red’.

Dr. Claire Jenkins's Pets

  • RedRed