Veazie Veterinary Clinic
1522 State Street, Veazie, ME
(207) 941-8840

Outdoor Cat Parasite Prevention

It is important to have your outdoor cat on medications protecting them from parasites. Cats are fleas’ favorite snacks, so your outdoor feline may bring them into the house. They may also be exposed to tapeworms, roundworms, heartworm disease, and ear mites. Fortunately, there is a topical medication called Revolution that can be administered once monthly to treat many of these parasites.

Fleas

Life Cycle: The adult flea is picked up from the environment, jumps onto your cat, takes a blood meal, and begins to lay 50 eggs a day. These eggs then drop off the pet and infest your house. The adult flea lives for approximately one week.

Prevention and Treatment: Topical compounds can be applied to your cat ‘s skin once a month to kill adult fleas. There is also a shot that lasts 6 months that can prevent flea eggs from hatching and infesting your home. A final option is a pill that will kill all fleas on the pet within 4 hours but it does not have any preventative or long-term effect.

Ear Mites

This is one of the most common health problems found in cats, particularly kittens. The ear mites are tiny insects that live in the ear canal and feed by piercing the skin. They can leave the ear canal and travel over the body of the cat, too, which is how they spread. Ear mites are a serious problem, and are deeply distressing and uncomfortable for your cat. They can crawl deep into the ear canals, where they may be difficult to treat with drops. Our method of choice is a topical applied once monthly.

Heartworm

The parasite is transferred animal to animal by a mosquito bite. Once inside your cat, the small worms migrate to the right side of the heart and grow up to one foot in length. Left untreated, the worms will cause significant damage to the heart. Heartworm used to be less common in Maine. However, with more pets being rescued from other areas of the country and brought to Maine, Heartworm is becoming an increasing concern for pets in Maine.

Tapeworms & Roundworms

Tapeworms and roundworms are both intestinal parasites. Tapeworms come from two sources; either from ingesting infected fleas while grooming, or from eating prey that are infected. They can be seen in stool or on the bum of your kitty, like small rice segments. Tapeworm has to be treated with a one time pill given orally.

Roundworms can cause diarrhea in cats. All kittens are born with them, but adults can get them from hunting or in their environment. We diagnose it with a stool sample, but it can be prevented with a monthly topical.

Read more about different types of parasite prevention HERE.