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Common flea tapeworm larvae develop in fleas, pets injest fleas while grooming and the tapeworm then develops in the animal's gut. Other tapeworm larvae develop in rodents that can be eaten by pets, especially cats. While not a major health risk, tapeworms cause itching and can be responsible for dogs rubbing their backsides on the ground, and irritation displayed by cats.
Roundworms are zoonotic parasites, which means they can be passed from animals to humans - especially children. They can also be exceptionally good survivors, with viable eggs able to live outside the animal for several years. Roundworm symptoms include vomiting, diarrhoea, pot-belly and colic. Kittens can develop roundworm at the foetal stage, prior to being born.
A regular worming program is essential
While worming is effective in killing worms that are present in the intestine at the time of treatment, worming is not a vaccine against future attacks. This is why regular treatment, especially in your pet's early months, is essential to the pet's health. Dogs and cats can be re-infected from other pets and from the environment.