How Long Does It Take For Worms to Leave a Dog

As a dog owner, you know that your pup loves adventure and getting into everything. However, if you are not careful, your dog can end up with worms due to these adventures. Worms can cause several health issues for your dog, and they can even lead to death.

how long does it take for worms to leave a dog
How long does it take for worms to leave a dog?

If you are about to start deworming treatment for your pooch, you probably want a better idea of what the process entails. You may also want to know just how long the process will take. Read on to learn about how deworming works and how long you should expect worms to leave your dog. 

How Long Does It Take For Worms to Leave a Dog?

labrador swimming happily
Even strong swimmers need a break every now and then

The timing of the deworming process can vary, depending on the type of worm, the amount of worms your dog has, and the method of deworming. Often, a higher amount of worms will require a lengthier treatment. Certain worms may also respond better to different treatments.    

With intestinal worms, you can expect your pup to start getting out the worms within a few days of giving your dog the deworming medicine. In some cases, the process may even begin within a few hours after treatment. 

You will often be able to see the dead worms in your dog’s feces. Your dog should pass all the worms in one to two weeks. A puppy will likely have diarrhea for a day or two after the deworming treatment. However, if diarrhea continues beyond that time, you should take your dog to the vet. 

In some cases, you may need to administer the treatment again. The worms in the feces should be transparent and dead. If you see worms that are moving and white, the treatment may not have worked, and you should try a different method with different active ingredients. Wait a few weeks before trying another method. 

It usually takes about six months for heartworms to leave your dog’s system. However, if some worms remain at this time, your dog will need another round of shots. 

Basics About Parasitic Worms in Dogs

Here are the most basic things to consider about caring for your dog to prevent worms.

Why Do I Need to Be Concerned About Worms?

While worms can sometimes be benign, they can make your dog very sick and even cause death. Worms can infect the intestines and other organs, including the lungs and heart. These parasites can take nutrients away from a dog which can be especially harmful to a growing puppy. 

How Common Are Worms In Dogs?

Worms are extremely common in dogs and even more common in puppies. Luckily, they are easy to treat, and by taking certain preventative measures, you can significantly cut down on the risk to your pooch. Your vet can help diagnose your dog and provide appropriate treatments. 

brown goldendoodle coat color
The brown (or chocolate) coat color Goldendoodle

Types of Worms

The most common types of worms found in dogs are roundworms and hookworms. Tapeworms and whipworms may also be found in dogs. These worms commonly live in the intestines of the dog. 

Some kinds of roundworms prefer to live in the dog’s heart, and these are known as heartworms. These spread via mosquitoes. Lungworms are worms that live in a dog’s lungs and are spread through saliva. 

Signs of Worms

Often, your dog will not show any signs of worms. However, there are a few things that can suggest the presence of worms in your pup’s system. 

Some symptoms include a pot belly in puppies, diarrhea, constipation, vomiting, loss of appetite, anemia, and weakness. You can also often see worms or worm eggs in an infected dog’s feces. Look out for white string-like or rice-like objects in the feces.

Where Do Worms Come From?

Many puppies get worms from their mothers in utero or shortly after birth. Worms can pass through an infected animal’s feces. Sometimes dogs can get worms from eating random plants and detritus on walks. 

Other worms spread through mosquitoes or shared water sources. Often, dogs are only exposed to the eggs or larvae of a worm, and then those grow into worms. 

cavapoo puppy outside
A Cavapoo puppy exploring the garden

How Can I Prevent Worms From Infecting My Dog?

There are a few ways to prevent all kinds of worms. Use a flea collar or other medicine to drive fleas away, give your pup monthly preventative heartworm medication, and keep your dog away from feces and communal water bowls. Keep your yard free of feces as a way to reduce exposure to worms.  

Talk to your vet about the best preventive regimen for your pooch before giving your dog any treatment. Certain treatments may be more effective against the worms found in your area. Be diligent about taking your dog to the vet for annual worm checks

Deworming Process

The deworming process starts when you take your dog to the vet. If they confirm that your pup has worms, your vet will give them some medication either with a shot or orally. Often, these medications destroy a large range of parasites. In some cases, your dog may need repeated use of this medication. There are also topical deworming treatments. 

Heartworm treatment is slightly different. Your vet will give your dog a monthly medication, antibiotics, and anti-inflammatory medication. You must keep your dog calm for the months following this treatment since getting excited can be harmful to your dog during this time. 

Can I Catch Worms From My Dog?

You can catch worms from your dogs if you do not practice good hygiene after interacting with your pup. Always wash your hands after petting them or cleaning up after them on a walk. Try to avoid letting your dog lick your face or sleeping on your bed if they have worms. 

Wrap Up

Worms may seem scary, but with some simple treatment, your pup will be back to perfect health. Intestinal worms usually pass in between one and two weeks. Heartworms take at least six months to leave a dog. Once this process is over, it is vital to take preventative measures so that your dog can avoid worms in the future.