What Are the Different Kinds of Parasites That Can Live Inside a Dog?

External parasites like fleas and ticks are easy to see, but intestinal parasites are hard to spot because they live inside your pet’s digestive tract and leave behind eggs or spores that are too small to notice with the naked eye pet’s stool. Tapeworms are an exception. They shed pieces that look like sesame seeds or rice grains and can be found in your pet’s poop or around their rectum. Another exception is roundworms, sometimes found in your pet’s vomit or poop. But it’s hard to tell if your dog has intestinal parasites, so you shouldn’t wait until you see them take your dog to the vet.

What are the different types of internal parasites? 

Find out about common parasites in dogs and how to protect your dog from these dangerous bugs by preventing them and treating them.


A roundworm that lives in a pet’s heart is called heartworm. Heartworms don’t often happen in the north, but animals that travel south or east may be at risk. Treatment for heartworms takes a long time and costs a lot of money. If heartworms go untreated for too long, the prognosis is usually not good.


Roundworm is the kind of worm that most dogs and cats have. Except in the worst cases, they can usually be avoided and treated. Roundworms can get very big and make you lose weight, feel bloated, have diarrhea, throw up, and have colic. Roundworms can and will live in people if they get the chance. Roundworms can make people very sick, so it is important to deworm pets on places like www.GreeleyPetVet.com to protect their owners.


Hookworms are parasites that can be found in the small intestines of cats and dogs. They feed on blood. By sucking blood from the pet’s small intestine, they cause anemia. Hookworms can kill, especially in young animals like puppies and kittens, so be thorough when deworming and regular pet vaccinations in Greeley. Hookworms can spread to people of all ages and make them very sick.


Whipworms are very rare in cats, but they always happen in dogs. Since whipworms don’t get as big as some more dangerous worms, they don’t usually cause serious illnesses. Still, if nothing is done, large populations can grow, leading to serious problems. People can get different kinds of whipworms than dogs and cats. Most of the time, whipworms are easy to treat with medicines that kill worms.


The tapeworm is the most common kind of worm that makes a dog or cat “scoot” or drags its bottom across the ground. Tapeworms are pretty common; most of the time, deworming medicine can help eliminate them. Because tapeworms and fleas need each other to live, it is important to take care of both internal and external parasites simultaneously. If your pet gets fleas, they could get tapeworms.

How to treat internal parasites?

If your pet has roundworms, hookworms, or tapeworms, your vet may give you a dewormer. Many dewormers can be taken by mouth and are sold over the counter or by vets. Before killing the worms, steroids, heartworm preventives, and antibiotics are used to stabilize the animal.


Heartworm medicine that the FDA has approved is injected into dogs. Most treatments last 30 to 60 days and involve three injections. Heartworm-infected dogs need to be closely watched at a veterinary clinic or hospital. Dogs have to take a break after therapy.


When heartworms are very bad, surgery may be suggested. Due to how long and expensive heartworm treatment is, dog owners should talk to their veterinary surgeon about how to protect their dog from getting heartworms.

The Takeaway

Talk to your vet to find out what’s wrong, how to treat it, and how to keep it from happening again. Keep in mind that regular trips to the vet are very important for your dog’s health. Talk to your vet and tell them about any signs of illness as soon as possible.