A combination of topical therapy and systemic oral therapy is the most common way of ringworm treatment in cats. This is good not only to get rid of the disease but also to prevent the spread of the self-limiting infection to humans, especially children, and other pets as well. Topical therapy involves the use of ointments, creams or shampoos while systemic oral therapy involves the oral application of anti-fungal medicines to your cat. All environmental contamination should be suppressed for the ringworm treatment to be successful.
A ringworm is a fungal infection of the skin but is not caused by a worm and is not even ring-shaped. Ringworm infection is caused by organisms that belong to a group of fungi know as dermatophytes. The species of dermatophyte in cat is called microporum canis which is infectious not only to cats but also to dogs and humans.Ringworm in cats might also be caused by the species called trichophyton mentagrophytes which can also infect humans.
It is very hard to detect ringworms in cats since ringworm lesions may be very mild and sometimes cannot be recognized. The only good indicator of ringworm in cats is scaling on the depths of the coat while other cats may have round thickened patches of skin accompanied by hair loss. It is important to bring your cat to a veterinarian who is the best person to diagnose ringworm in cats upon observing these symptoms. His recommendation for treatment will depend on the result of the culturing process or laboratory tests of the fungus obtained from the cat.
Different creams and ointments are always available and can be applied to local areas of the skin affected by the infection. It is just appropriate to shave the hair of the infected cat if only one or two portions of the cat’s skin has been affected. Clipping is suggested for the hair of a long haired cat or breed which can aid in the topical therapy treatment.A twice a week bathing of the cat using a medicated shampoo can also be done prior to application of medicine.
Topical treatments usually last for about several weeks to a number of months. It is important to wash your hand and sanitize it after coming in contact with the infected cat.
An oral anti-fungal drug is also effective in the ringworm treatment of your cat. The drug used for treating ringworm infections in cats is known as griseofulvin. Newer drugs such as itraconazole and terbinafine or lamasil are also used frequently and are often preferred by the vets due to lesser side effects. A recurrence of the disease may happen if oral medication is stopped too soon, resulting in a much longer therapy. Infected pets should be separated from non-infected pets if you have many pets in your house. Infected hairs also from your infected cat must be disposed at once to prevent infection on humans and other pets. Vacuuming all rooms accessible to your cat can also help in preventing spread of the infection and also reduce environmental contamination.
Providing the best care for your cat does not ensure your cat to be free of intestinal and external parasites. Parasite symptoms or worm symptoms in cats particularly external parasites can be confirmed immediately through routine check of your cat’s skin. You can check for specks like flea droppings and lice eggs sticking on cat hair. Frequent scratching of cats is also a clear indication that your cat has parasites on her body. Fleas usually leave dirt behind and the dirt is a good indication that your cat has fleas. You can also confirm infestation of fleas by scraping off the dirt and putting it on a damp tissue. If the dirt turns red or pink then your cat has fleas.
One kind of extenal parasite that resembles dandruff appearing across the back of the cat are cheyletiella mites. A severe infestation of this kind of parasite can cause skin scales. Another kind of external parasite called demodex mange mites are not harmful to but can multiply fast in old and weak cats as well as in kittens. Parasite symptoms in cats of the demodex mange mites are pimples or pustules on the skin which are indications of secondary infections. Sarcoptes mange mites are very small parasite but usually leave behind scabs and crusts as they move into their host. They usually gather at the tips of the ears and on the elbows, and can cause intense itching and irritation.
Your cat can also develop ticks which can be easily confirmed since they grow with bloow into a brownish white lump. The tick can be extracted using tweezers but make sure the head of the tick is removed as you pull at a twisting manner since the head of the tick can cause an infection. It is important to remove the tick since ticks can also cause acute paralysis and also spread life threatening illnesses such as lyme disease.
Internal parasite symptoms in cats include persistant diarrhea, weight loss and the repeated licking of your cat of her anal area and sometimes wiping hear rear against the grass or carpet. These signs indicate that your cat has internal parasites. A very telling sign that your cat has worms is the existence of maggots, eggs or larvae in the hair around her anus. It is important to immediately determine what kind of parasite is inside the body of your cat through a veterinarian so that the vet can prescribed to the correct medication to effectively eradicate the worms. It is important to follow the vet’s advice for deworming. Other signs that your cat hs internal parasites or worms are vomiting, loss of appetite and unthrifty coat.
Tapeworm signs do not show signs at once until the worm discharges white bits sized the same as that of a sesame seed and which can be seen in cat’s anus. Pinworms are hard to determine but can be confirmed with microscopic examination of tool sample. Blood sucking parasites such as hookworms causes anemia and decrease protein levels of the cat. Your cat can be very ill when having hookworms, making her lethargic, having a dark stool and weak while usually vomiting and suffering from diarrhea. Roundworms in cats can cause a distended abdomen and diarrhea while making your cat lose appetite.
Treating roundworms in cats can be done through numerous medications which can be recommended by your veterinarian. The veterinarian will recommend a roundworm treatment based on the cat’s age and the present condition. Deworming a pregnant cat also needs the advice of the vet to enable treatment of both mom and kittens. A monthly dewormer for roundworms in cats will not only will treat your pet but also prevent it from having future roundworm infections.
Roundworms or ascarids are considered internal parasites which are common catworms and survive by sucking the nutrients absorbed by the cat’s intestines. They are round parasites that can reach up to four inches long. The color varies from white to pale brown and looks like spaghetti noodles. They are usually suspended from the cat’s intestines and suck up nutrients from the its diet. The eggs of the roundworms can be detected through routine check of the stool sample of your cat. You can send your cat to a vet for treatment of roundworms after observing symptoms such as weight loss, pot bellied appearance, diarrhea, coughing, vomiting and dull hair coat.
The most popular treatments that your vet may recommend are the following:
- Drontal or Drontal plus which contain Febantel
- Strongid and Nemex which has an active ingredient known as pyrantel pamoate
- Panacur that contains fenbendazole
- Heartguard plus that contains pyrantel pamoate as well can also be administered orally to get rid of cat roundworms.
Dosage instructions should be followed correctly to eradicate roundworms. Over-the-counter medications such as those containing piperazine can also eliminate roundworms in cats. Milbemycin, ivermectin and selamectin are also considered effective dewormers especially for older kittens and adult cats.
Pyrantel pomoate is considered safe and effective as well for kittens which should be dewormed starting at 3 weeks from birth. Adult worms can be killed by giging the same medicine two to three weeks later. Kittens can also be dewormed monthly until 6 months of age for a more effective deworming result. Pyrantel pomoate can be given to your pet by your vet. Fasting your cat is not needed prior to the use of this kind of medication.
Roundworm treatments are not meant to kill the parasites in cats but only to stun the worms so that they may be discharged through the feces of the cat. If you see roundworms in the stool of the cat, then you can say that the medications taken by your cat have been effective. Exposure to the environment of the roundworms will start killing the worms.