Puppy Diseases & Parasites

At TLC Puppy Love we do everything we can to make sure you take home a well, healthy puppy. Their medical records start at two weeks old till you get them at eight weeks old.

  • 2 weeks old First preventive worming
  • 3 weeks old first Bordetella
  • 4 weeks old first Heartworm preventive
  • 6 weeks old First set of puppy shots 5 in 1
  • 8 weeks old Visit for nose to tail vet check where they receive health certificate that has weight and temperature documented on it. Also has a floatation fecal to check for worms and parasites, then a worm treatment.2nd set of puppy shots (2 more will still be needed) and 2nd Bordetella.

Information on Parasite and Worms

Coccidia

Coccidia in puppies can cause severe health problems, and is mainly brought on by stress. The stress of being separated, sleeping by their self, going to a new home, and being left alone. That is the main reason we do separation training before your puppy ever goes home with you. We have a medication we give to them as they are going through this training and give them a prescription to give those two weeks to adjust to the transition to their new home.

So what is Coccidiosis known as Coccidia is an intestinal disease, a common protozoal parasite that affects both domestic and wild animals. Coccidia infect the intestinal tract of dogs  Coccidiosis is relatively common in dogs. The parasite colonizes the lining of the intestine, and adult dogs often have coccidia in their system without getting sick. Puppies less than a month old are affected most often with intestinal disease.

It is important for you to understand all puppies have the parasite it stays dominate until stress has brought it active. You cannot kill the parasite you can only make it go dominate again. Adult dogs rarely show signs but a new mommy can because of the stress of puppies.

Signs of Coccidiosis

Puppies stressed by other separation, or illness such as parvovirus or roundworms, an unsanitary environment, and/or the crowded conditions of pet stores and shelters, are at highest risk for coccidiosis. The earliest sign typically is a mild diarrhea which becomes more severe until it contains mucus and sometimes blood also has a foul odor.  The puppy them becomes Anorexia, has weight loss, and dehydration follow. This acute phase lasts up to ten days, and severely affected puppies may die. So it is important to treat immediately. A fecal floatation at your vet can confirm if they have it

Giardia

Giardia are flagellated protozoa, or one-celled organisms, that are found not only in the small intestine of dogs and cats, but also in most wild animals and, actually, in a lot of people living in third-world countries.

There’s much that isn’t known about the giardia parasite.

We don’t know exactly how many species there are or which ones affect which animals.

We also don’t know everything about the life cycle of all the giardia species.

It’s generally assumed that while exposure to giardia is common, acquiring disease from the parasite is less common. Giardia is ubiquitous in the environment. It’s all over. It’s out there in rivers, ponds, puddles, and lots of other places.

Symptoms of Giardiasis

The majority of giardia infections are asymptomatic, meaning there are no obvious signs your pet is infected.  When symptoms are present, the most common is diarrhea, which can be acute, chronic or fluctuate.

Many dog owners don’t consult the veterinarian about their pet’s soft, mushy stool because often the stool improves on its own. About the time you’re ready to call your vet for an appointment, the stool firms up and all seems well again.

Because of the on-again, off-again nature of loose stools associated with giardia, many pet owners assume the dog got into something he shouldn’t have, or had a meal that didn’t agree with him. That’s why so many cases of giardia go undiagnosed.

After a week, month, or sometimes years of undiagnosed giardia infection, a giardia-positive animal can experience an acute and very debilitating bout of bloody, dehydrating diarrhea. Most dogs with diarrhea will not lose their appetite, but they oftentimes – with chronic cases – lose a lot of body weight.

This is because a giardia infection interferes with digestion and inhibits absorption of nutrients from the diet. It can also damage the lining of the intestine.  In fact, this particular parasite is at the root of many cases of chronic GI inflammation in dogs and cats.

Giardia is another protozoal parasite that can make puppies sick and telling the difference between the two is up to your veterinarian. So if you suspect your puppy has Giardia  please get them to the vet immediately.

Heartworm Disease in Puppies

Heartworm disease, so named because the adult worms live in the right side of the heart, continues to be a major problem for many species of animals. Heartworms are spread by mosquitoes, and thus are found throughout the world. In the United States the prevalence is highest along the southeastern Atlantic and Gulf Coasts, but heartworm has been found in all 50 states. The disease is less prevalent at higher elevations.

Symptoms of Heartworm Disease

Heartworm disease may cause a combination of medical problems in the same dog including dysfunction of the lungs, heart, liver and kidneys. The disease may have an acute onset but usually begins with barely detectable signs resulting from a chronic infection and a combination of physiologic changes. Dogs with a low number of adult worms in the body that are not exercised strenuously may never have apparent signs of heartworm disease. However, in most dogs, the heart and lungs are the major organs affected by heartworms with varying degrees of clinical signs.

Heartworm Preventive

There are different preventives you can give your puppy once a month to keep them safe. It is important to treat them even if they safe inside because mosquitoes can make their way in doors.

We give our puppies there first dose of Ivermectin at 4 weeks so when you go to your vet at 8 weeks you can get them on a heartworm preventive.

The great thing about using a heartworm preventive is it kills all worms, except tape worms so no need to continue worming treatments for roundworms, hook worms, etc.

Tape Worms

Your puppy gets tapeworms from ingesting a flea even through the nose.

Dogs with tapeworm infections usually are not sick and do not lose weight from the worms. Contrary to popular belief, dogs that “scoot” on their rear ends are generally doing it for reasons other than having tapeworms, such as blocked or irritated anal sacs (pouches located in your dog’s rear end) or other skin inflammation of the rear.

But when you see what they say looks like rice in the stool but I feel it’s more like shaved coconut flakes. Dewormer and heartworm treatments cannot kill this worm. There is only one pill that will kill tape worms, so call your vet.  One pill kills it. But to make sure they do not get infected again make sure you kill all fleas and clean feces up immediately.

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