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Just the thought of worms makes your skin tingle doesn’t it?

During the course of a dog’s life, most will experience at least one episode of intestinal parasites. Usually it will be during a time when immunity is stressed by pregnancy, severe illness, emotional stress, or following surgery.

so, how do you reduce the risk? The key is to destroy the eggs before infestation occurs.

Good sanitation is a must….
if your dog is kenneled, don’t have dirt runs-use cement, which is watertight, is easy to clean, and doesn’t provide a good breeding ground where eggs and larvae can thrive. The next best surface? Gravel. Gravel provides good drainage.

Kennels and runs should be hosed down daily, and allowed to dry thoroughly before returning the dogs to the area. Concrete and gravel can be disinfected with lime,salt, or Borax…be sure to rinse surface well.

Lawns should be kept as short and only watered when dry.

Remove stools from kennels, runs, and yards daily.

Because other creatures such as rodents, fleas, cochroaches, and other insects can also transmit tapeworms and round worms (more to come at a later date on these), it is important that kennel areas be kept free of this unwanted guests. Many products are available (natural and otherwise) to help manage pests in your yard. Go to the web site of the “Toxic Information Project” for more information regarding safe methods of pest control or “eartheasy.com” for more information regarding pest control.

If using products from your local supply store, be sure to read and ensure you understand the instructions thoroughly before use!

To help keep rodents away do not have bird feeders near the area so there is no seed/food being dropped, and do not leave pet food outdoors. Only use garbage cans with secure lids to remove attractants.

Many intestinal parasites spend their larval stage in other animals, and can develop into adults if your dog ingests them, so don’t allow your pet to eat dead animals (I know, disgusting, but sometimes dogs just do “gross things” as we say around our house!). Do not allow your dog to run free so you can control what they ingest, and be sure to fully cook any fresh meat that your serve your dog.

Be sure to treat your dog with heart worm medications as recommended by your veterinarian.

Resources on natural pest control also go to:
http://www.toxicsinfo.org
http://eartheasy.com/live_natpest_control.htm