my dog has worms that look like spaghetti and the vet said it is because he ate a flea ? I’ve wormed defleaed him and he is an inside pet and don’t have flea’s ? any advic. I would be greatful

Answer #1

I worked for a vet, he recomended worming your dog at least once a year, tape worms aren’t really a big deal, and your pet does not have to be covored in fleas to get a tape worm. You can buy wormer and give it your self, it’s taken orally and easy to do for next time, will save money too.

Answer #2

Fleas cause tapeworms (only in some areas)…that’s how he got one…He must have gotten the tapeworm before you deflea’d (the flea stuff doesn’t affect the tapeworm)…The vet gave him something, for the tapeworm, didn’t he?

I’ve heard that in Fl, WV, the Carolinas, that fleas this year are very bad…that even Advantage and Frontline aren’t as effective as in the past…


Answer #3

I Live in FL, I am an emergency Vet. Tech. Yes the above is true with the exception that Frontline does not work in FL, It works great! But yes it is recommended to at least have a fecal done once a year to check for parasites (worms), In the case that he has any worms they will treat there! You may want to be careful with what you buy at pet stores cause a lot of Owners end up overdosing pets which can be toxic some of the time leading to death, make sure you are getting an approved flee medication that is topical (goes on the top of your pets skin, on the neck where he can not lick it) An over dose of flee medication or getting the wrong kind can put your pet into seizures, I do not recommend being cheep and getting the Harts, biospot or sargents, I have seen many pets pass away from these brands, Plus when you get a medication from the Vet you have the satisfaction that this particular drug has been tested and a professional Doctor is giving you the proper dose!

I dont mean to scare you but these are facts, and things that I see everyday working where I work. If you think about it, Being cheap and saving money now may cost you an arm and a leg in the emergency room, I say this cause I dont want to see your animal in my emergency room because of something that could have been prevented! I see enough suffering walk through the door to keep me payed!

Answer #4

If it looks like spaghetti it is roundworm. Don’t worry about how your dog got it just treat it. Round worms get in the lungs, stomach and intestine. If you get a really active worm it will take several wormings to get rid of it. Tape worm looks like rice

I advise Interceptor, it is a pill you give you dog once a month that cover all worms like heatrworm, tape, round and etc. I give once a month on the 1st day of the month and that way I never forget. Better to do it all year long and stay with the progam.


There are two species of roundworms affecting dogs and puppies: Toxocara canis and Toxascaris leonina. Both are treated with the same medication protocol so when eggs are seen on a fecal flotation exam it may not be necessary to determine which species is present. T. leonina can infect both dogs and cats so identifying this roundworm might be helpful in indicating which pets in the household are at risk for further contagion.

        Note: Fresh feces is not infectious.


toxocara adult

adult Toxacara worms In dogs, there are four ways by which infection with Toxocara canis occurs:

* Consuming infective worm eggs from soil in the environment (generally through normal grooming).

* Nursing from an infected mother dog.

* Consuming a prey animal (usually rodent) that is carrying developing worms.

* During embryonic development when an infected mother dog is pregnant (most puppies are infected this way).

        Note: cats cannot be infected with Toxocara canis.


Toxocara canis has one of the most amazing life cycle in the animal kingdom. It is crucial to understand this life cycle if effective treatment is to be pursued.

Life Cycle Toxocara

STEP ONE: Toxocara eggs are passed in the host’s feces. If a fecal sample is tested, the eggs can be detected. The embryonic worm develops in the outdoor environment inside its microscopic egg for one month before it becomes able to infect a new host. If environmental conditions are favorable, it takes about a month for the egg to become infective but Toxocara eggs are famous for weathering harsh environmental conditions. Eggs can remain infective for months to years.

        Note: Fresh feces is not infectious.

dog lickingSTEP TWO: The egg containing what is called a “second stage larva” is picked up from the dirt by a dog or by some other animal. usually in the course of normal grooming. The egg hatches in the new host’s intestinal tract and the young worm burrows its way out of the intestinal tract to encyst in the host’s other body tissues. If the new host is a dog, the life cycle proceeds. If the new host is a member of another species, the larvae wait encysted until the new host is eaten by a dog.

STEP THREE: These second stage larvae can remain encysted happily for years. If the host is a dog, the larvae mostly encyst in the host’s liver. When the time comes to move on, the larvae excyst and migrate to the host’s lungs where they develop into “third stage larvae.” They burrow into the small airways and travel upward towards the host’s throat. A heavy infection can produce a serious pneumonia. When they get to the upper airways, their presence generates coughing. The worms are coughed up into the host’s throat where they are swallowed thus entering the intestinal tract for the second time in their development.

howparvo2If the host is pregnant, the larvae do not migrate to the lung after they excyst; instead they home to the uterus and infect the unborn puppies. The second stage larvae make their way to the puppies’ lungs to develop into third stage larvae.

If the host is a nursing mother, second stage larvae can migrate to the mammary gland instead of the lung after excysting. Puppies can be infected by drinking their mother’s milk, though, due to the intrauterine cycle described above, the litter would probably already be infected.

        Note: When dogs are dewormed with traditional dewormers, this affects only worms in the intestinal tract. It does not affect encysted larvae. It is very difficult to prevent mother to puppy transmission and routine deworming is not adequate. It is possible to prevent infection in unborn puppies by using a specific daily protocol of fenbendazole (your veterinarian can provide details) or with the new generation product AdvantageMulti® (containing moxidectin).

STEP FOUR: Once back in the intestine, the larvae complete their maturation and begin to mate. The first eggs are laid about one week after the fourth stage larvae have arrived in the intestine and about 4-5 weeks after infection has first occurred. From here the cycle repeats.


Roundworm infection can have numerous negative effects. It is a common cause of diarrhea in young animals and can cause vomiting as well. Sometimes the worms themselves are vomited up which can be alarming as they can be quite large which females reaching lengths of up to seven inches. The worms consume the host’s food and can lead to unthriftiness and a classical “pot-bellied” appearance. Very heavy infections can lead to pneumonia as the worms migrate and, if there are enough worms, the intestine can actually become obstructed.

It should also be noted that human infection by this parasite is especially serious (see below). It is important to minimize the contamination of environmental soil with the feces of infected animals so as to reduce the exposure hazard to both humans and other animals.


Toxocara egg

Toxocara egg You may not know and this is one of the arguments in favor of regular deworming. Regular deworming is especially recommended for dogs that hunt and might consume the flesh of hosts carrying worm larvae. Puppies are frequently simply assumed to be infected and automatically dewormed.

Of course, there are ways to find out if your dog is infected. If a dog or puppy vomits up a worm, there is a good chance this is a roundworm (especially in a puppy). Roundworms are long, white and described as looking like spaghetti. Tapeworms can also be vomited up but these are flat and obviously segmented. If you are not sure what type of worm you are seeing, bring it to your vet’s office for identification.

Fecal testing for worm eggs is a must for puppies and a good idea for adult dogs having their annual check up. Obviously, if there are worms present, they must be laying eggs in order to be detected but, by and large, fecal testing is a reliable method of detection.


Numerous deworming products are effective. Some are over the counter and some are prescription. Many flea control and/or heartworm prevention products provide a monthly deworming which is especially helpful in minimizing environmental contamination. Common active ingredients include:

* Febantel (active ingredient in Drontal and Drontal plus)

* Pyrantel pamoate (active ingredient in Strongid, Nemex, HeartgardPlus and others)

* Piperazine (active ingredient in many over the counter products)

* Fenbendazole (active ingredient in Panacur)

* Milbemycin Oxime (active ingredient of Interceptor and Sentinel)

* Moxidectin (active ingredient in AdvantageMulti)

There are two important concepts to keep in mind about deworming. Medications essentially anesthetize the worm so that it let’s go of its grip on the host intestine and passes with the stool. Once it has been passed, it cannot survive in the environment and dies.

        This means that you will likely see the worms when they pass so be prepared as they can be quite long and may still be alive and moving when you see them.

The other concept stems from the fact that all the larvae in migration cannot be killed by any of these products. After the worms are cleared from the intestine, they will be replaced by new worms completing their migration. This means that a second, and sometimes even a third deworming is needed to keep the intestine clear. The follow-up deworming is generally given several weeks following the first deworming to allow for migrating worms to arrive in the intestine where they are vulnerable.

        Do not forget your follow-up deworming.


The life cycle of Toxascaris leonina is not nearly as complicated. They do not migrate through the body in the way that Toxocara does. Instead, the Toxascaris second stage larva is consumed and simply matures in the intestine, a process which takes 2-3 months. Like Toxocara, Toxascaris can infect hosts of other species, though with Toxascaris the larvae can develop into third stage larvae in these other hosts while with Toxocara larval development is arrested in species other than the dog.

Life Cycle Toxascaris

        Note: Toxascaris leonina can infect both dogs and cats alike.


This site has been launched by Bayer largely to promote AdvantageMulti®, its new topical deworming/flea control product. The site contains general information on intestinal parasites of pets and potential contagion to humans:


The Companion Animal Parasite Council has put up an educational site for dog owners on parasites including Roundworms:


Oh people and cats can get it

Answer #5

Hello I have a 10 week old basset hound and we have had him for 5 weeks and have had him to the vet just about once a week. When we got him he was so enfested woth round worms the vet said he had a respiratory infection. We have dewormed him 3 times over the last 5 weeks and as soon as the meds are stopped the coughing and loose stool comes back. Help we have spent so much on him already I am afraid to think why these worms keep coming back. He is on antibiotics but he only seems to be good for a couple days and then the coughing returns. Is this normal?

Answer #6

Seriously, I am visiting a friends , house and on the way to the bathroom, in the dark I stepped into her a fresh pile of dog poop, when I turned on the light , there were white wiggly worms in the poop, I immediatley washed my foot with hot water bacterial soap and disinfected with bleach, I am flipping out, can I get this worm from stepping into the poop?

Answer #7

Your puppy does not have fleas trust me my dog did the same thing .Make sure you de-worm him and it could take up to 3 sessions to get rid of them ,each session is two weeks apart so be patient ,oh and by the way its round worms that are VERY contagios even to people so WASH YOUR HANDS!!

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