Worming your Puppy or Dog
Regular worming of all dogs is essential both for the animal's optimal health but also human health. Only with a large burden of worms would you expect to see clinical signs (weight loss, vomiting, diarrhoea, anaemia, poor coat) but smaller numbers are still important to prevent the cycling of these parasites in the environment. Repeated worming is particularly important for puppies and pregnant bitches because the life cycle of the roundworm is such that they increase dramatically in numbers around birth to infect the puppies.
A puppy becomes infected with roundworms in the uterus and subsequently from their dam's milk and faeces in their immediate environment from littermates and the dam. A dog becomes infected with tapeworms from eating raw meat or grooming and swallowing fleas.
Puppies should be wormed roughly every 2 weeks (from 2 weeks old to 12 weeks of age), then monthly until 6 months. Our recommended wormers include Milbemax (a broad spectrum worming tablet which can be used from 2 weeks old) and Panacur (a comprehensive 3 day wormer in palatable granules, paste or liquid form which can be used from birth).
Dogs over 6 months should be wormed with a broad-spectrum wormer every 3 months routinely, and we usually recommend Milbemax.
Breeding bitches should ideally be wormed prior to mating and then daily from day 40 of pregnancy until 2 days after whelping with Panacur. This virtually eliminates larval transfer to the foetal puppies but it is still best to worm the puppies every 2 weeks with the dam, because of environmental contamination.
An alternative is to worm the bitch before mating and again in the last week of pregnancy, then with the puppies every 2 weeks from 2 weeks after birth.