Symptoms of Worms in Dogs, Illness Guide, Types of Worms

The Symptoms of Worms in Dogs & Puppies

The symptoms of worms in dogs can vary depending on the types that your dog or puppy gets infected by.

In this section we have provided a guide to the illness that can be caused by specific worms whether its Roundworms, Whipworm, Ringworm, Hookworm, Tapeworm or Heartworms.

We will also discuss the diagnosis and treatment for your dog or puppy when they are infected by worms…

The Symptoms of Worms in Dogs & Puppies

Canine worms are actually parasites that can live inside your dog or puppy but also externally on your dog or puppy’s skin.

The most common types of worms in dogs and puppies are…

  1. Roundworms (Ascarids)
  2. Hookworms (Ancyclostoma caninum)
  3. Heartworms (Dirofilaria immitis)
  4. Tapeworms (Tape Worms) (Dipylidium caninum)
  5. Whipworms (Dirofilaria immitis)
  6. Ringworm (Dermatophytosis)

Unfortunately worms in dogs and puppies are quite common – some surveys estimate that out of the 80 million dogs in the USA as many as 12% show the symptoms of worms.

Symptoms of Worms in Dogs and Puppies…

Hookworms – This parasite will enter your dog or puppy’s skin and will then travel through your dog’s body into the lungs – your dog or puppy will then cough up the parasites and they will then be re swallowed. This parasite will then enter the intestine leading to the parasites needing food and sustenance – consequently the worms will then feed on the matter in the intestines – the symptoms your dog or puppy will experience include, anemia, intestinal bleeding, blood in your dogs stool, wheezing, coughing, dry skin, and cramps in the abdomen.

Roundworms – These types of worms are actually the most common variety that your dog or puppy will be infected by – the parasite can either be passed on to your puppy through the milk of the mum or before the puppy is born and still in the womb. However, Roundworms can also be ingested through infected soil or food that contains the parasites. Symptoms include bloated stomach, diarrhea, vomiting and loss of weight.

Heartworms – This variety are one of the most deadly – this type will infect your the respiratory system. The symptoms do not always show until your dog has become older and the worms have matured in the heart or lungs.

The most common way for dogs and puppies to get infected by Heartworm is through mosquito bites. The symptoms can include, breathing problems, coughing, weakness, the abdomen may appear larger, your dog or puppy may occasionally faint and experience high blood pressure. Due to fact that the symptoms don’t always appear until too late – and if it is not treated the symptoms can lead to congestive heart failure and even death.

Tapeworms – These parasites are quite common in dogs and puppies and do not actually feed through their mouth but actually through their skin. The parasite will grow in different sections (or segments) having different functions (respiratory and digestive). The Tapeworm will break off in different sections in your dog’s intestine and will appear as rice like pieces in your dogs poop (stool). The size of Tapeworms can grow anywhere from (6mm) up to (many feet long).

The parasites actually need two hosts – an initial host like a flea which will ingest the eggs – your dog will then need to have eaten this flea for the life cycle of the Tapeworm to continue (inside your pooch). You may notice the Tapeworms crawling on the outside of your dog or puppy especially near your dog or puppy’s anus (where the worms are passed). This parasite will feed on the nutrients in your dog – ingesting important nutrients meant for your dog or puppy. The symptoms can include, vomiting, pain in the abdomen, loss of weight, restlessness and itching.

Whipworm – This type of worm looks like a whip with a thin tapering body. When this variety is at the egg stage it is surprisingly hardy and resilient – able to live in cold weather outside for long periods of time (even years). The Whipworm eggs will live in soil or other areas and will then be eaten by your dog or puppy – with the eggs then maturing in your dog’s body. The Whipworm will attach itself to the large intestine in your dog or puppy also known as the (Cecum), the parasite will then pierce the intestinal wall and feed and suck on the blood. The female will pass the eggs in your dog or puppy’s body which will the be passed out in your dog’s stool.

The symptoms of Whipworms in dogs can include tiredness and lethargy, loss of weight (severe), anemia, your dog may become dehydrated, have intestinal bleeding and pass stools that appear slimy and even have blood appearing in them.

As previously mentioned the symptoms of worms in dogs will vary depending on the type that your dog or puppy has ingested. To spot the symptoms of worms in dogs take your dog to the vet on a regular basis so that you can catch the symptoms before they become more serious.