We consider cats to be unique cleaners who, according to people, spend most of their lives licking paws and fur. Maybe, but, unfortunately, this is just an appearance, and we, as humans, often succumb to this illusory belief. The problem is not what we see, but what we don’t see, or rather, we don’t see internal parasites. And this is a common and, unfortunately, underestimated problem in cats. What are the most common and where do they come from? We will try to answer these questions below.
Nematodes are the most popular internal parasites.
They look like spaghetti strands and can be found in cat feces.
The second place in this ill-fated group is tapeworms. Their segments, similar to rice grains, can be seen on the cat’s fur around its anus and tail. When the tapeworm is large, it can block the intestines, endangering the cat’s life.
Both of the above examples show parasites that can be seen with the naked eye at a late stage. Unfortunately, the situation is worse with those parasites that cannot be seen without the use of a microscope. This group includes: nematodes that live in the circulatory system and subcutaneous tissue, protozoa and Toxoplasma gondi.
According to experts, the most vulnerable to parasites are animals that spend time outdoors, as well as without the supervision of their owners.
For this reason, cats, driven by the hunting instinct, fall prey to poisoned mice that were previously infected with parasites.
Let’s try to trace the possible ways of infection with parasites.
In the adult form, the tapeworm can reach 80 cm in length, feeding on the small intestine of its victim. Infection occurs when eating a so-called intermediate carrier, which in this case is a flea. And she ate tapeworm eggs while she fed, and now everything is clear. Remember that a dog with fleas has a high chance of getting tapeworm infection. Also, if the pet begins, colloquially, to sled hard or lick around the anus, it may be a tapeworm.
A tapeworm from a cat or dog can cause illness and even death
Other vectors are mosquitoes, which carry nematode larvae without problems. Very often, infection occurs during the summer, when mosquitoes enter rooms through open windows when airing the house.
On the other hand, Toxoplasma can be found in raw meat eaten by a cat.
The main methods of infection with parasites in a cat can be considered the following:
– drinking water from a puddle
– eating the droppings of other animals, including birds
– ingestion of insects
– bite and eat the surrounding grass
– consumption of uncharted meat
– licking especially the bottom of the shoe
– dirt is brought under the shoes
The owners do not even suspect how many possible sources and causes of the appearance of parasites in cats. Parasite eggs can also be brought home on the wheels of a pram, scooter or bicycle.
The eggs of the feline roundworm are in the ground, so it is very easy for him to catch it.
Symptoms of feline worms include?
– frequent vomiting
– lack of appetite
– weight loss
– deterioration of hair quality
– prolonged diarrhea
– the presence of blood in the stool and mucus
– cough and shortness of breath
Cats that do not leave the house also fall prey to internal parasites.
Prevention is key, which is why a responsible guardian regularly sends his cat’s feces for testing every 3 months. If the test is negative, there is no problem and the cat does not need to be dewormed. If, on the other hand, the analysis shows that he is infected with parasites, it will be known which anthelmintic drug is most suitable for him. Samples should be refrigerated prior to sending chairs for testing.
One of the most common diseases diagnosed in cats is caused by parasites. Therefore, it is important to regularly check feces or deworm because some parasites invade the victim asymptomatically.