Parasites like roundworms, hookworms and tapeworms can commonly infect cats and dogs. They can pose a risk to your pet’s health and can also pose a health risk to you. However, by keeping your pet healthy and practicing good hygiene, you can help minimize the risk of getting parasites from your pet. Below are some tips on how you can help protect yourself — and your pet — from these dangerous parasites.
Schedule Routine Veterinary Visits
Schedule appointments for your pet with your veterinarian at least once a year for vaccinations, fecal and heartworm testing and a wellness examination. Regular vet visits can help identify parasite infections and arm you with the right preventive products based on your pet's risk of parasite exposure.
Prevent your dog or cat from hunting and consuming prey animals, which may be infected. Feed your pet only a cooked or commercially prepared diet.
Remove Waste from Public Places
Support fecal-removal and leash policies in pet exercise areas and public places. Encouraging these efforts promotes a healthy environment for all pets and helps prevent the spread of parasites.
Properly Dispose of Feces
Pick up and properly dispose of feces from outdoors and from the
litterbox as soon as possible. Also be sure to cover sandboxes properly to prevent any contamination by neighborhood cats.
Wash Your Hands and Watch What You Touch
Always be sure to wash your hands with soap and warm water after handling feces, cleaning the
litterbox or playing with pets. To help prevent hookworm infections, it also helps to avoid skin exposure to soil that may be contaminated with infected animal feces, which means wearing gloves when gardening and not walking barefoot in grassy areas.