What is it?
Fecal exams are used to determine if your dog or cat has intestinal parasites such as hookworms or roundworms. Parasites not only make pets uncomfortable and irritable, but they could also lead to more serious conditions for your pet or even be transmitted to family members.
How do dogs and cats get worms?
Transmission of intestinal worms (hookworms, roundworms, and whipworms) commonly occurs when your dog ingests contaminated soil or feces containing eggs or immature worms (larvae) that have been passed from other infected animals in the environment.
What will happen if my dog or cat gets worms?
While each parasite affects dogs and cats differently, there are some general warning symptoms that dog owners should be aware of. Intestinal worms may cause:
- Abdominal pain
- Weight loss
- Poor coat appearance
- Pot-bellied appearance
- Deficiencies in nutrition and anemia
- Intestinal blockage or pneumonia
- Blood in the stool (either bright red or darker purple)
How can I prevent my cat or dog from getting worms?
When your cat or dog goes to the bathroom, pick up and throw away the poo immediately. This decreases the risk of worm eggs getting into your yard or a cat’s litter box. Avoid areas with feces from dogs, cats, or wild animals. Choose parks and trails that are clean and well-managed. Get an annual fecal test and use a monthly parasite preventative to protect your pet!