Call us now ! Send us an email Escalon Av Escalon United States

Back to Top

3 Canine Parasites to Watch Out for Year-Round

It's a common myth to believe that dog parasites are only a problem in the warmer months of summer. Unfortunately for dogs and their human caregivers, no season is off limits for pet parasites. Monitor your dog's health and schedule routine veterinary checkups to avoid infestations of heartworms, fleas and other canine parasites.
There are three parasites that affect dogs all year round in warmer climates. Important facts about these three pests are listed below to help you prevent and avoid problems with your favorite pup.

1. Giardia

Giardia is a one-celled organism found in the guts of animals and humans. It can be carried by feces into bodies of water including puddles, streams and ponds. Many human hikers are sickened by the human-seeking species of Giardia after drinking untreated water along backcountry trails. Humans infected with the parasite often suffer stomach cramps and diarrhea. 
When a human or dog is infected with Giardia, the disease is called giardiasis. Dogs, like humans, will exhibit loose stools, diarrhea and weight loss. However, many dogs who have the bacteria present in their stomachs never show any signs of infection. They may continue to eat heartily and have high energy levels.
If left untreated long term, the dog’s health will slowly decline. The dog may display lethargy, refuse to eat and become seriously ill. The only way for your dog's vet to diagnose and treat giardiasis in your dog is by taking a stool sample and checking for the presence of the bacteria. The vet will prescribe antibiotics and other medications to treat the infection.
To protect dogs from giardiasis, experts recommend that you keep dogs away from water as much as possible while out and about. Wipe your dog's paws after your pet splashes in puddles or lakes. Carry fresh water and a dog bowl with you when you travel so your dog is less likely to lap up contaminated water.


Sneaky, itch-causing ticks are enjoying a population explosion all over the country. Milder winters offer the teeny arachnids more time to breed. Increasing numbers of white-tailed deer — common hosts for ticks — provide more warm-blooded bodies for tick fuel. Encroachment and development into forested and rural areas increase human and pet encounters with ticks.
Ticks carry a wide spectrum of diseases that affect both canines and humans. To manage ticks and your dog, learn about the types of ticks in your area. Perform routine checkups on your dog and yourself after every outing. 
Keep your yard cleaned up to lessen the likelihood of ticks on your property. Ticks like to hang out in leaf litter, leggy weeds and tall grass. Some ticks drop from branches onto people and pets, so trim leafy limbs above walkways and sitting areas. 
Ticks should be removed immediately from your dog to reduce the chances of a tick-borne disease or infection developing. Ask the vet how best to remove ticks from your dog. Purchase a tick removal tool to make the job easier if you have a great number of ticks in your area.


You may have heard the expression, "mangy dog" used to describe an animal that looks rough and dirty. Mange is an actual disease that occurs when microscopic mites dig under your dog’s skin or attach themselves to your canine's hair follicles.
Mange can infect one localized spot on the body or it can occur all over a dog's coat. Symptoms include hair loss, a greasy feel to the coat and red, inflamed skin. Rashes and constant scratching are signs of mange, too.
Your vet can treat the mange with creams, shampoos and antibiotics. It's important to treat your dog quickly because mange is contagious and will spread to other dogs in the family. Sarcoptic mange — or scabies — can develop in humans from contact with dog mange, but this is a relatively uncommon occurrence.
Call Escalon Small Animal Clinic today to schedule a complete exam and treatment of your dog's persistent parasites, rough coat and itchy skin issues.



Tag cloud