Does Your Dog Have Roundworms?

April 30th, 2012
Posted by | Posted in Health and Nutrition 2,175 views

Roundworms in dogs, as with all worms in dogs, are a very serious and common condition. Roundworms in dogs are also known as Toxocara canis or Toxascaris leonina. Roundworms can become up to 8 inches in length, and female roundworms can lay thousands of eggs in a single day. Roundworms can be found in feces, which can lay in the soil for months, sometimes years, without dying. Dogs may contract roundworms by directly or indirectly consuming feces that is infected with roundworms eggs.

Roundworms are parasites that live and reproduce in the small intestines of your dog. It is not uncommon for newborn puppies to be infected with roundworms shortly after birth. This may be caused by the worms passing through the placenta or mammary glands during feeding to the puppies. Roundworms in puppies are very serious and can often be fatal. Deworming your puppies is very important, and another deworming is recommended again at 6 months.

Symptoms of roundworms in dogs

Puppies are at a higher risk of contracting roundworms from their mother. The risk can be especially high if the mother was never vaccinated against worms. Unfortunately, puppies often die because of an over-infestation of roundworms. It is important to know what symptoms of roundworms in dogs to look for in order to seek immediate treatment.

Some common symptoms of roundworms in dogs include:

– Vomiting, this can range from mild or severe and may actually contain worms.

– Diarrhea, which also may contain worms.

– Loss of appetite, which may in turn lead to severe weight loss

– Bloated stomach in the lower intestine region

– Weakness and lethargy

– Hacking or gagging noises

– Dull skin and coat

Often times, roundworms can lead to pneumonia, anemia and even death. Puppies can develop a disease known as parasitic pneumonia, which does not have a high recovery rate. Dogs of any age can become infected with roundworms, but puppies are much more susceptible to this particular worm.

Treatment for roundworms in dogs

In order to diagnose roundworms in dogs, your vet will likely take a feces and blood sample to examine. Once roundworms have been determined, treatment will begin right away. Treatment for roundworms in dogs is simple and usually very effective. The most popular form of treatment is a chewable tablet that contains Ivermectin, an anti-parasitic used to prevent and kill roundworms.

Treatment for roundworms in dogs may take more than one try. This is because deworming medications do not kill the larvae, but rather the adult worm.

It is also important to note that humans may become infected with roundworms from their infected dogs. Always wash your hands after dealing with an infected dog or puppy, and after cleaning up feces. Be sure to vacuum and wash the floors regularly when dealing with roundworms.

For more information about worms in dogs, symptoms of each, treatment options and more, visit

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