About Parasites

As a responsible pet owner, one of your main goals is to keep your pet healthy. Every dog, whether or not they spend a lot of time outdoors, can become the host to a number of parasites. It is not unusual for a dog to become infected with multiple types of external and internal parasites in their lifetime.

 

Heartworms, fleas and intestinal parasites can cause severe discomfort and health problems to the infected pet. Fortunately, these parasites are easy to control, treat, and/or prevent.

 

Dangers of heartworm

 

Heartworm disease is a potentially fatal disease affecting dogs in all 50 states. The American Heartworm Society (AHS) suggests a conservative estimate of one million positive cases in the U.S. each year.1

 

Although preventable, dogs continue to suffer from this life threatening disease.
 

Heartworm disease is transmitted via infected mosquitoes. Once an infected mosquito bites a dog, microscopic larvae migrate through the mosquito bite into body tissues and find their way to the blood stream, eventually maturing in the lungs and heart. Heartworm infections can progress to life-threatening heart disease.

 

Treatment of heartworm disease is a long and costly process. Adult heartworms can be killed using adulticide medication, but it requires multiple injections over 30 days that may require hospital stays. Your veterinarian may also recommend strict exercise restrictions.

 

Without treatment, the disease may progress, leading to increasingly severe health conditions and even cardiac failure/death.

 

Diagnosis

  • Dogs may be infected for years before clinical signs are present.
  • Yearly testing is recommended by the American Heartworm Society.2
  • Damage to the heart and lungs begin to occur once larvae reach the lungs.
  • Signs of heartworm disease may include chronic cough, fatigue, fainting and weight loss.

 

Facts about fleas

 

Fleas are the most common parasite affecting dogs and puppies. In just 30 days, 10 fleas can become an infestation of up to 250,000 adult fleas on your pet and in your home.3

 

Besides the discomfort of flea bites, fleas can cause medical problems in pets including Flea Allergy Dermatitis (FAD), which can lead to hair loss, skin inflammation and irritation. In large numbers, fleas can cause anemia from blood loss which can be fatal if your pet is young or feeble. Also, fleas are carriers of a common tapeworm, which can cause cramping and gas.

 

What are intestinal parasites?

 

There are a number of intestinal parasites that can infect dogs including:

  • Roundworms
  • Hookworms
  • Whipworms
  • Tapeworms*

 

Intestinal parasites:

 

The problem with intestinal parasites is that you cannot always see them. And for the most part, your pet can carry on with life without any real impact on its health. Some of the common worms that can infect your pet are:

 

Roundworms

Dogs can become infected with roundworms by eating soil or feces contaminated with eggs or by eating infected hosts such as mice or birds. If the problem is serious your dog may vomit these worms or pass them (whole) in the stool. In addition to causing vomiting and diarrhea, roundworms in your dog, especially on puppy may cause them to look bloated or ‘potbellied’. They also cause loss of energy and poor condition.

 

Hookworms

These intestinal parasites can cause anemia (and sometimes death) in puppies as they attach to the intestine and suck blood. Dogs are infected by ingesting larvae from contaminated areas, via the mother’s milk or when larvae penetrates the skin.

 

Whipworms

Dogs can become infected when ingesting contaminated eggs in their environment, much like with roundworms. The eggs are very resistant to temperature and environmental extremes. They can live in the environment for 4 to 5 years! Whipworm infections can cause severe diarrhea, intestinal blockage and weight loss.

 

Tapeworms*

Dogs can become infected by swallowing fleas while grooming. They can be seen externally when segments break off. These segments vary in length, are usually white and can be seen contracting and expanding around the rectum. These segments then die and you might spot what looks like grains of uncooked wild rice or sesame seeds on your puppy bedding. Tapeworms can cause irritation and cause dogs to “scoot” their rear-end along the ground. They also cause weight loss, diarrhea and a dull coat. Go to the CDC website to see how your pet's parasites could affect your health.

 

Prevention of external parasite and internal worm infections

 

The Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC) recommends year-round treatment with heartworm preventatives that have broad-spectrum activity against intestinal worms and year-round flea preventatives. Advantage Multi® for Dogs (imidacloprid + moxidectin) Topical Solution helps provide this recommended standard of care in one convenient topical application. Consult your veterinarian to develop a total pet parasite protection program that's right for your pet.

 

*Advantage Multi® for Dogs is not indicated for tapeworms. Please consult your veterinarian for treatment options.

 

Not for human use. Keep out of reach of children. Children should not come in contact with the application site for two (2) hours after application.


Product Label

 

1The Team, Vol. 6, No. 4, p. 10.

2 American Heartworm Society, www.heartwormsociety.org, Canine Heartworm Disease, September 9, 2010.

3 http://worldanimalfoundation.homestead.com/FACT_SHEET_Protecting_ Animals_In_Summer.pdf, October 28, 2009.

 



Ask a Veterinarian

Post your pet health and behavior questions for advice from a veterinarian.



View all answers

Product Finder

Where to buy your favorite Bayer Animal
Health products.
within of

Important Safety Information

Important Safety Information

WARNING:
DO NOT ADMINISTER THIS PRODUCT ORALLY. For the first 30 minutes after application ensure that dogs cannot lick the product from application sites on themselves or other treated animals.
Children should not come in contact with the application sites for two (2) hours after application. (See Contraindications, Warnings, Human Warnings, and Adverse Reactions, for more information.)

CAUTION:
Federal (U.S.A.) law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian.

Product Label
K9 Advantix® II 4.2 5 104 104
It did not work for ticks I used advantix II on my dog about 10 days ago. She never got wet, no bath, no rain. Today I took her to the groomer and they found a tick on her. Fortunately it was only a brown tick. Will never buy this again. August 11, 2012
We still have ticks Even after applying this product to my 22lb dog...I am pulling ticks off of him at least 2 times a week! I was hoping this would prevent that. He is mostly indoors, but we take him for walks in areas that obviously have ticks. I don't know what else to use. I am very disappointed that a brand that claims to prevent ticks is not working for us. I haven't seen fleas though, so I guess part of it is working. August 1, 2012
Didn't work I put K9 Advantix 2 on my 4 month old Golden Retriever puppy and even the next day she had ticks. I am so tired of pulling ticks off of her. It's been 2 weeks yesterday that I applied it and everyday I am pulling off every varitation of tick out there. I am so dissapointed K9 Advantix is suppossed to be the best. It's not. I paid $50 for my 4 month supply and will not be buying it again. July 17, 2012
Didnt work for me I have been using this product faithfully on my two shelties for the last two years, Well, last night I discovered them covered with fleas..... I will not be buying this product anymore. July 16, 2012
Doesn't work! I applied Advantix to my Husky mix dog 1 week ago. Today while she was in the house a huge engorged tick fell off of her. Gross!! It was not dead. I took her outside and pulled off 15 more slightly engorged ticks. None of which were dead. This product does not work! July 15, 2012
Does NOT work! Waste of money!!! I have been using K9 Advantix on my dog for the past 3 months and it does not work at all. I switched to Advantix from PetArmor which was just as bad but more affordable. I thought paying so much for a product would mean something but after 3 months I am very disappointed. For instance, I put Advantix on my dog, Riley, five days ago and there are fleas all over him. I do not expect Advantix to be a miracle worker and perhaps I could maybe understand if he had fleas after a few weeks but five days later??? According to the label, Advantix is supposed to kill fleas within 12 hours of application. That is completely false. I'm tired of spending so much money on products that do not work and this is one of them that I will surely never use again!! Perhaps if your dog stays indoors his entire life and never goes into a yard then Advantix might be useful. Other than that its a waste of money! July 15, 2012
Doesn't work Last month I bathed and brushed both my dogs(X-large 90 & 110 lbs and appllied K9 Advantix as instructed. I have pulled 2 ticks off of my yellow lab; one a week after I applied and one 2 weeks after I applied. I'm not very happy as this stuff isn't exactly cheap. July 15, 2012
Wonderful product! I can't say enought about this product. Love it! Thank you for helping to protect my lab from nasty ticks!! July 14, 2012
©2013 Bayer HealthCare LLC, Animal Health Division | Conditions of Use| Privacy Statement| Imprint| About Us| Contact Us| Site Map
Bayer and the Bayer Cross are registered trademarks of Bayer.