Worms are the most common of parasites that like to make their home inside your pet cat. Kittens are especially susceptible as the worms can be transmitted by the mother even before birth and then also during feeding. The roundworm is the most frequently found worm in cats but others include hookworm, tapeworm and whip worms. You will be able to spot the worms, in most cases, if you examine your cat’s stools.
Cats may become infected from the contaminated feces of other animals and also from consuming small animals such as rodents. It is important to stop the life cycle of the worms in order to stop other animals from becoming infected.
An infestation of roundworms can lead to a gradual weakness in the cat because the worms rob the body of vital nutrients that are required for a healthy life. Some of the signs and symptoms to look out for
* Anemia and possible weight loss
* Diarrhea with dark, foul-smelling feces
* A Swollen abdomen especially in kittens
* Poor appetite
* Lack of energy
Other things to check to confirm that your cat is infected, is if you see a worm in any vomit. Sometimes cats will throw up for all sorts of reasons and you may be able to spot Roundworms because they are quite long and white in color and sometimes likened with spaghetti. If the worm is very long, flattish and with segments, then its probably a tape worm. If you suspect or find any worms in your cat then its best to treat them as soon as possible
Treatment and Prevention
Its very important to get your cat treated for roundworms as soon as possible, not only to maintain your cats good health but also to protect people who can also become infected with these worms. Children and pregnant women are very much at risk and this is another reason why cats and dogs should not be allowed to foul in a childrens public play area, beaches or even your garden. It can be difficult to stop a cat from wandering and doing its business wherever it likes and it may be worth trying to introduce it to a cat litter tray and encourage it to use it regularly.
Regarding treatment, make sure adult cats are treated at least once or twice a year, after the initial treatment. Kittens should be treated every two weeks from 3 to 9 weeks of age, followed by monthly intervals for the first year and as adult cats thereafter. Use a specific parasite control medication regularly and in accordance with the directions.