Hookworms are dangerous and in many cases even fatal. Most patients are young puppies and dog owners will have to be alert for signs related to the condition. These vampire-like creatures are known to suck out blood from their victim and can infect, then invade, and ultimately take shelter in the dog’s small intestine. The larvae, in its fourth stage can initiate inflammation and anemia in the dog’s intestinal system.
It may seem like a vampire-themed movie, the fact is after enjoying the first bite, the blood will continuously seep out of the bitten spot. Continuing as a cyclic way, the parasite will, again and again, return to the same place to feed on the blood.
Which breeds are prone to suffer from the condition?
Conditions like warm and moist environments serve as the perfect (Read Ideal) ground for the parasite to thrive and survive. Any dog can get affected by the parasite and regions of overcrowding and poor sanitation fuels the parasites to attack a dog.
Signs and Symptoms
A dog affected by the parasite looks unwell with a reduction in appetite. Signs like paleness in the lips, nostrils, and ears are ubiquitous and may seem casual to those who are unaware of the condition. If the parasite(s) steps into the lungs, the dog will dispose of symptoms like a cough, along with many other signs such as tarry and dark feces. Diarrhea along with the condition, constipation will add to the agony of the dog. If the dog doesn’t get proper treatment, extremities like death are also possible.
Young pups generally get the condition from the lactation process from their mothers. Milking the young pup is a natural process, but in this case, it can pass on the parasite to the young puppies. Something, as unusual as penetrating the skin surface of the dog and infecting the animal can also happen. Casualty such as ingesting the parasite will welcome the aftereffect of infection. The parasites harbor massively in places like infected water.
As being microscopic, these organisms can only be detected by a thorough examination by the experts in the laboratory. Specimens like the stools play a vital role in the whole investigation process. The entire investigation will pave the way for the required treatment. Something like the death of an entire litter can also happen which promptly say that a thorough investigation is the need of the hour.
The modern vet medicines provide a practical solution to the issue. Medications are there to either expel the condition or kill the parasites. Sometimes, as simple as providing the basic medication is all it takes to cure the condition. Some dogs may also need iron medication, along with some nutritional substitution. For young pups in their second week, start the preventive process with worm medication until one gets sure that the dog is free of the worm.
When the situation gets serious, the puppy or the dog will need immediate hospitalization. If hospitalization out of severity happens, the dog will need treatments such as fluid therapy, transfusion of blood, and mechanical supplement of the vital gas, oxygen. Sadly, some dogs may not get into the hand of the extreme treatments and can succumb to death.
For pregnant dogs, treatment for deworming should start as early as in the first two weeks of pregnancy. Deworming should continue until the age of four to six weeks after the puppy is born.
The places where the dog frequents need regular cleaning and maintenance. Places like containers, low-lying areas, or even ponds where the parasites thrive easily require specific attention.