Can You Visually See Worms in Canine Feces?

by Cindy Quarters
    Some worms can infect puppies even before they are born.

    Some worms can infect puppies even before they are born.

    Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images

    Even the best-raised puppy can end up with intestinal parasites, the most common of which are tapeworms, roundworms, whipworms and hookworms. Depending on your dog’s age and condition, the presence of worms may not be apparent, especially if he doesn’t have many of them. Eventually, if the infestation isn’t treated, your dog will show signs of the worm burden he carries by becoming ill. In some cases he may also pass worms that are visible in his feces.

    Visible Worms

    Both tapeworms and roundworms may make their presence known when you spot some of them in your dog’s stool. Tapeworms come out in segments that look like grains of rice. They typically stick to the area around the dog’s anus or fall and land in his feces. Each segment is packed full of worm eggs and may or may not be wiggling when you see it. Roundworms are generally bigger, look like strands of spaghetti and can be as long as 5 inches.

    Not Visible Worms

    Whipworms and hookworms are generally too small to be seen with the naked eye and must be diagnosed by microscopic examination. A routine veterinary screening will find these worms. If the dog doesn’t get regular checkups, these worms are usually only found if the dog gets sick and begins passing blood or vomiting. Always consult an experienced veterinarian regarding the health and treatment of your pet.

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    About the Author

    Cindy Quarters has been writing professionally since 1984. She writes travel, pet, gardening and technical articles, with work published in "Radiance Magazine" and the "AKC Gazette," as well as online. Quarters earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from Washington State University and a master's degree in management information systems from West Coast University.

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