This is a Guest Post
Worms and other harmful parasites can be extremely unpleasant for our beloved pets such as cats and dogs. However, do they pose an even bigger problem? Can they spread to – and cause problems for – our children?
It is indeed possible that worms and other parasites can pass on to our children, and there are generally a number of reasons for this, including:
– High levels of children/pet interaction
– Lack of knowledge regarding hygiene when handling pets, and then doing things like eating
– They have a weaker and less developed immune system than adults
How can animal parasites affect children/humans?
Depending on the type of parasite that has affected your pet – and your child/family member – it can have a number of different affects or symptoms. Possibly the most well known infection that your cat or dog can have is toxoplasmosis. This can be spread to humans through contact with their faeces, mainly. Also, it’s important to note that this parasite in particular can be fatal to unborn babies in pregnant women, so effective treatment is crucial.
The main symptoms of most of the parasites that your pet may have passed on to a member of your family can include (but are not limited to) vomiting, diarrhoea, change in weight, change in appetite and fever. Be sure to keep an eye out also for change in behaviour, such as lethargy or restlessness. If you have any concerns, consult your doctor who will be able to help. Most parasites are not greatly harmful to your children and can be treated easily and fairly quickly.
So, how do we prevent this from happening?
The best method of defence is to prevent your pets from becoming affected in the first place. There are a number of things you can do to reduce the risk. This includes:
– Taking your pet for regular vet check-ups, so they can identify and treat any problems. Also keep up to date with any vaccinations that they need. It’s a good idea to research which ones your specific breed may need, too
– Treat them with preventative medication, such as Drontal worming tablets from vet-medic.com
– Keep their area – including pet beds and other upholstery that they take a liking to – clean and disinfected
– Ensure that children take necessary steps regarding hygiene when they have been around their pet. The most important thing is that they understand the need to wash their hands before they eat, and after having contact with an animal
– When cleaning up faeces (particularly diarrhoea) never use your bare hands. Always wear protective gloves and disinfect any contact areas immediately and safely
– Try to limit the amount of contact you have with a sick pet to avoid spreading any infections. Although your first reaction may be to shower the poorly pet with love and affection, restricting this and giving them medication can speed their recovery and reduce the chance of anyone else becoming affected.
Disclosure: This post was brought to you by Vet-Medic