Deworming Kittens: Why Early Deworming is So Important

All sorts of dangers lurk in kittens shortly after they are born. One of these is worms, which the kittens may ingest with their mother’s milk. Find out why, when, and how often you should dewormer your kitten in the following article.

Can Kittens Actually Have Worms?

The clear answer to this question is: yes! If the mother cat is infected with worms, these are transmitted to the kittens either before birth or through breast milk.

Deworming Kittens: When and How Often Should I Deworm Them?

Since these pesky parasites can also infect kittens, vets recommend that kittens be dewormed for the first time when they are two to three weeks old.

An alternative approach is to collect fecal samples and have them checked for worms, instead of deworming the kittens across the board. At this tender age, however, you must have your mother’s feces examined.

If mother cats and babies need deworming, your vet will give you a suitable medication and inform you about the administration and the exact dosage.

Repeat Worming on Kittens Regularly

Once the kittens and the mother have received the first wormer, you must repeat this every two weeks until the kittens are no longer suckled. A short time later, the mini kitties will move in with their new owners and should receive their first vaccinations.

In this context, new cat parents should also discuss how to proceed with deworming. It is usually advisable to deworm the kittens again at the age of four, six, nine, and twelve months. After that, the deworming interval depends on the cat’s living conditions.

Symptoms of Worm Infestation in Kittens

Even the smallest kitties are very good at hiding symptoms of illness. However, there are some indications that kittens are infected with worms:

  • Vomit
  • Diarrhea
  • Bloated stomach
  • Dull fur
  • Stunted growth

If worms can be seen in the vomit or in the feces, the diagnosis is of course easy. Unfortunately, whole worms are usually only excreted when there is a strong infestation.

So if your kitten shows one or more of the above symptoms, you should definitely have a fecal sample examined by the vet. Since worms and worm eggs are not excreted continuously, it makes sense to have a collection sample of three consecutive days examined.

Deworming Kittens: How Does Worming Work?

The common worming agents nowadays have a broad-spectrum effect. That is, they work against several types of worms. In addition, not only are the adult worms killed, but also larvae and eggs.

However, the broad spectrum agents do not work against every type of worm. It is therefore always a good idea to check with your veterinarian to determine what type of worm it is. In addition, you should not give the same preparation over and over again. In this way, you can avoid developing resistance in the worms.

There are very different ways in which you can give a wormer to kittens. Pastes, tablets, and spot-on preparations are available. The spot-on method, in which you apply the medication to the skin on the neck, has proven itself especially for kittens who stubbornly resist tablets or pastes.

Important: You must always deworm all animals in a household at the same time, otherwise the animals will infect each other again!

Make sure that the drug is also suitable for the respective animal species. You cannot dewormer your cats or kittens with all preparations that are intended for dogs.

Can I Prevent My Kitten From Becoming Infected With Worms?

There is also a clear answer to this question: No, unfortunately, you cannot prevent worm infestation in kittens. Even if you only keep it at home, you can inadvertently carry worm eggs into your home with your shoes or clothes.

In addition, worming treatments for kittens do not have a prophylactic effect, they only fight the worms that have just attacked the kitten. If your fur nose picks up a new worm the next day, the cycle starts all over again.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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