Cats are very clean animals, but it does not mean that they cannot get worms and dangerous parasites from other cats, or even other animals. So, if you are sleeping with your cat, you may want to ask yourself this time, “Can I get worms from my cat sleeping in my bed?”
We can all agree that one of the worst things that could happen to you and your cat is to have worms. Although these parasites are easily treatable, they are difficult to completely remove and can even spread to people.
Every cat owner needs to be aware that their cat may have internal parasites of some sort. Worms are transferred by coming into contact with things such as infected feces that contain parasite eggs or materials harboring them.
Your cat may acquire worms from a variety of sources, including other animals, fleas, and eating wild prey like mice or other rodents. By keeping your healthy indoor cat indoors, you may significantly lower the danger, but it's still possible for cats to get worms.
And while it is true that many worms are species-specific and can only infect cats, it’s also true that there are other worms that can be transmissible to other animals and even to us, humans.
Can You Catch Worms From Your Cat Sleeping in Your Bed?
Yes, if your cat sleeps on your bed, you could catch worms from him. Although not very likely, it is a possibility. Cats can transmit worm-forming parasite eggs (oocytes) to people. However, you have to consume the oocytes for this to occur, which makes it more difficult for you to contract an infection.
You are more likely to get worms if you are in close touch. You could unintentionally consume the oocytes if your cat is resting close to your face or if they get on your mattress.
If your cat has worms, the oocytes will be detected in his poo. Cats lick themselves thoroughly, therefore it's possible that the eggs would wind up on their fur.
So, when you pet your feline friend, you can get the oocytes on your hands, and then you risk ingesting them if you touch your face or handle food after that. Transmission is obviously more likely if your cat rubs up against your face when you're lying in bed. Your cat is more likely to give you worms if he rolls on your pillow and you put your face on it.
Experts frequently advise against sleeping with your pet. Although it is pleasant to cuddle in bed with your cat, it is far too easy to pick up worms from him when you are both asleep.
Curling up in bed with your pet is an excellent way to catch fleas and any contagious diseases that your cat may be harboring. Allowing your cat to sleep in your bed will exacerbate your cat allergies if you have one. So, if you'll think about all of these factors, you may want to consider making your bedroom a cat free zone.
Can I Contract Worms From an Infected Cat Licking Me?
Yes, you can contract worms from your cat licking you since your cat can spread them to your body.
Cats kiss you as a way to establish a social connection. They occasionally lick other cats or animals. This is a normal activity that typically results from your cat's mother licking the kittens to groom them and express her love.
However, if your cat is infected or has worms, she could spread the infection to you through licking. When you sleep with a cat who has licked another cat, you run the risk of contracting worms.
And as a cat parent with multiple cats at home, you know that sometimes your cats would lick each other's butt. So, what if one of your household cats has worms? Indeed, you and your other pets can also be infected.
How Can Humans Get Worms From Their Cats?
Humans can acquire worms from cats in a few different ways. Worms typically leave their bodies through cat feces or lay eggs that leave the body along with feces. Typically, a person needs to consume infected faeces or contaminated soil in order to contract cat worms.
Humans can also contract cat worms from fleas, but only if they eat a flea that has been contaminated. Feces from dogs or other animals with worms may be found in a garden or on the grass. As a result, if there are any incidents, one must be aware of what is being touched and avoid putting their hands close to their mouth.
Below are the common methods of transmission of worms to humans:
- Kids having fun in sandboxes where cats had defecated.
- Putting your bare feet or walking on contaminated ground.
- Gardening in the dirt without wearing gloves.
In general, it's important to keep away from animal feces and get rid of fleas. Veterinarians now treat worms in cats, but pet owners can also readily do at-home deworming procedures as preventative measures.
It is therefore uncommon for a cat parent to get worms from their pet. The majority of preventative actions are implemented by veterinarians, especially if your cat has routine checkups.
However, it's still possible. So, it is important for cat owners to understand what they can do to avoid contracting worms, both for themselves and their furry friends.
How Can Cats Get Worms?
A cat might acquire worms far too quickly. There are undoubtedly a variety of methods for outdoor cats to come into contact with parasite eggs. They may also encounter infected cat excrement in the ground, come into contact with other sick cats, catch a prey animal that is harboring the parasite, and more.
And while indoor cats are safer, oocyte contact is still a possibility for them. A cat may walk through the eggs-containing dirt before licking her paws, making it simple for the eggs to be tracked inside the house. Indoor cats may also contract the parasite from house mice and other invasive rodents that carry it in their muscle tissues. Also, if your cat eats infected animals, such as lizards, he can also be infected.
Some of the intestinal parasites that dwell in dogs can also live in cats. So, you should also watch out for this possibility if you have canines at home. If a cat comes in contact with dog feces, the dog may transmit worms to the cat.
It's very possible that any additional cats you have in your home will be infested after one cat does. Cats who share a litter box could also have parasites in common. Shared litter boxes between cats can lead to parasite transmission.
As a cat owner, it’s understandable that you cannot control everything your cat does. Cats can get themselves into anything, whether they are living indoors or outdoors. Hence, preventative measures, regular examinations, and treatment are the greatest ways to help them avoid getting worms.
What Types of Worms Can Infect Cats?
Roundworms, whipworms, hookworms, and tapeworms are the most prevalent types of worms in cats. Usually not dangerous, these infections are also fairly simple to treat. However, it's also possible for your cat to have more harmful parasite infections. These parasites can cause severe illness and even death, despite being less frequent. These include the following:
Cats with internal parasites may not even exhibit any symptoms, with the infestation only becoming apparent after a checkup with the veterinarian. Oftentimes, healthy cats can have worms that go unnoticed for months.
The symptoms of more serious infestations can vary. Losing weight is very common, and the cat could overall look less healthy. It's possible that your cat's physique is degenerating and that her coat is looking dull. She might experience vomiting or diarrhea spells, as well as an enlargement of her abdomen.
Other symptoms could appear as the cat's condition worsens. Dehydration is frequent, especially when there is vomiting or diarrhea. Vomit or feces may include mature worms. The cat can start to feel weak and lethargic and run off somewhere to hide. It's possible to have breathing or coughing issues. The onset of anemia may cause the cat's lips and gums to turn pale. Low blood pressure is another possibility.
The cat may experience shock in really severe cases that go untreated. Rarely, death could happen.
Your pet's health depends on routine checkups. Get the proper treatment from your veterinarian if you think your cat could have worms. Ask your veterinarian for the right treatment as the deworming pills available in pet stores are sometimes insufficient and ineffective.
What Are Symptoms of Worms in Cats?
When your cat has worms, you sometimes can't tell unless you actually feel or see them, and that seldom happens. Monitoring your cat's feces is the greatest approach to finding worms in them. You can then determine whether your cat has worms or eggs by doing this.
There are several symptoms that might appear in cats, depending on the sort of worm they may have. Some symptoms are comparable while others are distinctive. The following symptoms of a cat with worm issues include:
- Bloated abdomen
- Coarse coat
- Regularly dragging or scraping their bums on the ground
- Excessive licking of their butt
- Weight loss
- Skin lesions
- Soft stools
- Continuous coughing
- Difficulty breathing
- Tarry stool
How to Prevent Worms in Cats?
While preventing cats from ingesting worms is not always possible, there are many other things that may be done, including the following:
- Using flea medications will prevent fleas on your cat.
- Vacuum frequently, paying special attention to your cat's sleeping and resting areas.
- Clean up your house as much as you can by disinfecting it.
- Keep your cat away from the trash and unclean areas.
- Keep your cat's litter box area tidy.
- Bring your cat to the doctor to get heartworm, intestinal worm, and parasite prevention year-round.
- Observe cleanliness and proper hygiene.
- If you have outdoor cats, pay attention to where they defecate, and clean the place right away.
- Use mosquito netting to keep mosquitoes out of your home and away from your cat to avoid the spread of worms.
Taking your cat to the veterinarian every year for a deworming treatment can provide you peace of mind so you can sleep and cuddle with your feline companion. Veterinarians can offer even more guidance and perhaps even different types of treatments that you can perform at home every two months.
How to Treat Worms in Cats?
There are worming medications for cats that a veterinarian can administer. Dewormers do in fact exist, and cats can receive them orally or via injection.
It is vital to go to the vet to make sure you are giving your cat the finest treatment possible. Treatments rendered and/or prescribed by the vet are the most efficient.
The drugs that can be used to treat hookworm, roundworm, whipworm, and tapeworm diseases include Panacur (fenbendazole) and Drontal Plus (pyrantel, praziquantel, fenbendazole). The vet will advise you on how many dosages to administer and then, you should check up on your cat to determine if the treatment is working.
How to Avoid Catching Worms From Your Cat?
Children are more likely to contract worms than adults, who are less likely to have them. But when it comes to cats, everyone should be cautious. After touching or handling your cat, always wash your hands. You should pay particular attention to washing your hands before you eat or prepare food.
Ensure that any young children in the home are aware of the significance of washing their hands after playing with the cat. Children under two tend to put everything in their mouths, including your cat's ears and tail, so keep an eye on how they interact with the cat. And make sure to wash their hands after, each time they come in contact with your cat.
Litter boxes are breeding grounds for a wide variety of terrible illnesses, including toxoplasmosis. When cleaning the litter box, put on gloves, and wash your hands very thoroughly. Regularly disinfect the area around the litter box and its floor.
As mentioned above, it's crucial to treat worms as soon as possible. While certain parasites might not even show any signs of life in a healthy cat, they might deteriorate your pet's health if left untreated. The likelihood that the infestation will be passed to you by your feline companion increases the longer she is infected.
For the majority of cat owners, worms don't pose a serious threat. And you shouldn't have any major concerns as long as you observe basic proper hygiene practices.
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