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The pet has spaghetti-like white or tan worms in vomit or feces. There are several types of worms that can infest pets: heartworms, tapeworms, roundworms, hookworms, whipworms and ringworms. Heartworms affect the heart and are transmitted by the bite of infected mosquitoes. Ringworms affect the skin and cause circular-type sores on the skin. Tapeworms, roundworms, hookworms and whipworms feed off of the blood in the intestines of dogs and cats.

How to Recognize

Worms are one of the last things that pet owners want to see in their dog or cat's vomit or feces. Unfortunately, worms are common to both cats and dogs, and worms in their vomit or feces, can indicate an infestation. Furthermore, there are several types of worms that can make their home inside your pet's body. Unfortunately, there are only two types of intestinal worms that can be visibly seen in a dog or cat's vomit or feces: roundworms and tapeworms. Roundworms are long, thin worms that are white or ivory in color and have pointed heads and tails. If your pet has these worms, they can appear in both feces and vomit. Tapeworms are small white worms that grow in segments and can often be seen hanging from your dog or cat's rectum. They will vary in length depending on how long the segments have grown. Tapeworms can also appear as dry, rice-like deposits in the feces of your pet. Hookworms and whipworms are not visible to the naked eye; however, if your pet displays any of the following additional symptoms, it may indicate these worms: Loss of Weight, Increase or Decrease in Appetite, Lethargy and/or Apathy, Diarhhea (with or without blood), Loose Stools and/or Mucus in Stools, and Swollen Abdomen.

Causes of Worms

All of the above types of worms need to feed off of the blood of your pet for them to survive. Whipworms and hookworms are typically spread by way of infected animals. If your pet ingests the feces of an infected dog or cat, there is a possibility that it could become infested with worms itself. Roundworms, on the other hand, are generally passed on to puppies through their mother shortly after birth. Tapeworms are carried by fleas. As such, if your pet is heavily infested with fleas, there is a large chance that it could become infested with tapeworms as well.


If your pet is experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is important that you take it to the vet for treatment. However, to find out exactly what is wrong with your dog or cat, the vet will need to give your pet a complete physical. It will also be necessary to collect and examine a fecal sample to determine if there are any worms or eggs present.

Similar Symptoms

It is essential to note that some symptoms that are indicative of worms can signify other illnesses as well. For example, apathy, diarrhea and/or bloody stools can indicate such health issues as ulcers, obstructions, parvovirus, coronavirus, gastroenteritis and feline leukemia virus. Additionally, a swollen abdomen can be a warning sign of bloat. Unexplained weight loss can indicate a thyroid deficiency.

Possible Conditions

As stated above, there are four conditions that can cause worms in your pet's vomit or feces, and they are infestations of tapeworms, roundworms, hookworms or whipworms. If you see worms or notice any of the other symptoms listed above, you will need to seek treatment from a vet right away.

Treatment for Worms

The treatments that will be necessary for your pet if it has worms depends on the severity of your dog or cat's infestation and overall condition. Nevertheless, you will find some of the most common treatments listed here: Dewormers, Flea Treatments, Antibiotics, and Electrolyte Replacements. When you see worms in your cat or dog's vomit or feces, it can be a symptom of an infestation. Since worms feed off of your pet's blood, a heavy infestation can be quite serious and even life-threatening. With that said, it is important for you to make an appointment with your vet right away.

Pet Insurance

When adding a dog or cat to your family you want to make sure your pet is happy, healthy and protected. During its lifetime your pet is exposed to many illnesses and diseases and some breeds are affected by a congenital disease which is a condition existing at birth. At these moments when your pet is ill or maybe needs surgery, you want to be protected for the unexpected and high veterinarian costs.

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