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"Hookworms and Why Dogs are Kept off Beaches"
This week we would like to discuss hookworms, another extremely common intestinal parasite of dogs and cats. Typically, these are invisible to the unaided human eye. They are about 1/2 inch long and very, very thin. Since they are "bloodsuckers", 300 adult worms can drain 10% of the pet's blood per day. This can cause extreme stress or even death of the pet.
What are they?
How do our pets get
A second source of infection is through the mother's milk - Hookworm larva can gain entry into the mammary glands and be passed to the puppies or kittens as they nurse. The larva then mature in the intestine to form blood sucking adults.
The third possibility is if the pet should swallow a Hookworm larva found in the environment (like on a blade of grass, a toy, water or food dish). The Hookworm larva mature to adults in the intestine as above. Soon after feeding on blood the Hookworm adults begin laying eggs which pass with the feces. Under favorable conditions (moisture and warmth) the eggs hatch within 12 to 18 hours and a tiny juvenile Hookworm emerges. This larva is encased within a sheath that offers protection against dessication and ensures long life in the environment. The larva reside in moist areas of the soil and overlying vegetation.
The most important mode of transmission is unique! I mentioned above how the eggs pass with the feces and hatch within 12 - 18 hours on moist ground. The newly hatched larva then become free-living organisms which thrive in moist soil or on damp grass awns. Another interesting thing is that the larva can live for many weeks without food. These free-living larva are able to penetrate the intact skin of dogs or cats passing by or as a pet lies on the ground the heat excites the larva and they go right through the thin skin of the ventral abdomen. Picture this! You take your dog on a walk in a park where Hookworm infested dogs have deficated. As your pet passes through the wet grass an infective juvenile Hookworm brushes onto the paw. The larva easily penetrate the skin and follow a blood vessel to the lungs. From there the worm is coughed up and swallowed to mature in the intestine; begin sucking blood and laying eggs.
Lost? Maybe a graphic will help...
What are the
signs of Hookworm infestation?
What is the treatment?
Why dogs are kept off
Be Safe - Be Sure - Have Your Vet Check Your Pet's Feces for Intestinal Worms Twice a Year!
I would like to
continue on with the subject of the worms of dogs and cats and how they can affect humans.
Here is the schedule.
- Whipworms and the Neighbors Dog
A Little Pet Humor in Closing
Rules For Cats
For sitting on laps or rubbing against trouser legs, select fabric which contrasts well with your fur. For example: White-furred Cats go to black wool clothing. NOTE: Velvet takes precedence over all other cloth.
For the guest who exclaims, "I love kitties!", be ready with aloof disdain, apply claws to stockings or arms, or use a quick nip on the ankle.
When walking around the dishes on the dinner table, be prepared to look surprised and hurt when scolded. The idea is to force your humans to reveal that they tolerate this behavior when company is not there.
Always accompany guests to the bathroom. It is not necessary to do anything - just sit and stare. If you do feel active, try turning off the light switch if it is within reach; this is usually good for some laughs. Some Cats with a more prankish disposition like to hide behind the White Drinking Bowl and reach around to pat the human on the behind as s/he is sitting down. This will result in expulsion, but it is worth it!
Rules for Dogs
Daddy gets embarrassed when I stare at his peeper when he is getting ready for a shower.
I can walk faster than one inch an hour.
I do not need to dribble my last drink of toilet water on Mommy's bedspread.
I will not bury my Gooey Chewy in Mommy and Daddy's bed.
I will not do the "dog sled" (drag my bottom) when guests are present.
I will not hump the feather duster whilst making ungodly noises in front of my humans friends.
I will not lick lotion off my Mom's legs; she doesn't need my help.
Rolling in unmentionable things does not make me more attractive.
Images used in this publication taken from Hill's Atlas of Clinical Anatomy, Published by Veterinary Medicine Publishing Company, Inc. A publication donated to veterinarians by the Hill's Pet Food Company to teach clients about their dogs and cats in sickness and in health. Hill's Pet Food Company produces Hill's Prescription Diets and Science Diet Premium Pet Food
Have A Good Week
Later, Dr Dan