Treatment for the most common form of tapeworms in pets can be treated by a single injection or oral dosage available at your local veterinarian's office and just recently this tapeworm medication (Praziquantel) for cats
and Praziquantel for dogs
has come available without a prescription by the FDA, although still limited in distribution. Recent studies, stated by Ohio State University, have shown that the efficacy rate is better in oral medication than in the injectable, though both are acceptable forms of treatment. As you may know, some animals especially cats, just don't like taking pills and the quantity of pills needed for a large dog increases the expense. This dose will destroy the tapeworms within 24-48 hrs that are in the body at the time of dosage. Unlike other medication for different intestinal worms that have to be redosed in two weeks, this does not, because of that unique characteristic of the eggs being in the segments, thereby killing the eggs at the same time.
Now, this does not mean that a pet will not get reinfected. In fact, if you do not eliminate the intermediate hosts (fleas, etc...) than you may experience the whole cycle again in as little as two weeks.
Control of the environment is the key.
1. Fleas must be eliminated from both the pet and the environment, preferably before bringing them home from the vet.
2. Apply a flea control to your pet but check with your vet as to which they recommend since improper or prolonged usage to most flea products can cause health problems.
3. Don't forget to treat the inside and outside, especially the bedding area with a flea control.
4. If your pet's a hunter at heart, don't allow them to eat small rodents or raw fish.
5. For maintainence, use a fine tooth flea comb
to inspect for infestation and to destroy stragglers. Remember, even one infected flea can cause tapeworms. You may find it useful to dip the flea comb in rubbing alcohol to stun the fleas (unless your very fast). Though this may not be advised for sensitive skin.
6. A vitamin supplement
may help your pet restore what nutrients were lost to the tapeworms. Your vet may even give an injectable vitamin to help boost a pet's system more rapidly.
Notify the Doctor if Any of the Following Occur:
* Your pet vomits or has diarrhea.
* Tapeworm segments are still seen after the prescribed
* Your pet continues to lose weight.
* Your pet continues to have hair loss.
Tapeworms are a frustrating and disgusting ailment because fleas are usually involved. Perservance usually pays off but it's not an easy nor pleasant road.
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