Imagine lots of spooky creatures crawling inside your beloved dog’s intestines.
Ugh!!! That’s disgusting.
Who would like feeding and raising mobs of creepy worms causing serious harm to their precious pooch?
Simply, no one!
Dogs have a habit of eating anything from anywhere. They will eat your dinner leftovers. They will eat rotten food from dustbins, and you might have noticed them eating other dogs’ poops.
That’s awful for you, not for your dog.
Resultantly, they get harmful intestinal worms. There’s no limitation. Dogs of all ages can get contracted with intestinal parasites.
Some kinds of worms can be seen with the naked eye, while some can’t be.
So, there’s a chance you might not get aware that your dog is contracted with worms at once. In that case, you can get help from your vet.
Once you sense any signs of your dog being infected with intestinal parasites, examine the worm type, and take steps for parasitic elimination.
Now, what can you do to keep your dog happy and healthy?
No need to restrict your dog’s outdoor activities. You only need a dewormer specifically created for dogs. When you know the worm type affecting your dog, picking up the best dog dewormer becomes easier.
Best Top Dog Dewormers: Our Top Picks
☞ Best Overall: Excel Safe-Guard 4 Canine Dewormer
☞ Best For Large Dogs: Durvet Triple Medium And Large Dog Wormer
☞ Best Liquid: Nemex 2 Liquid Dewormer For Dogs
☞ Best For Small Dogs: Sentry HC WormX Plus 7 Way Puppy & Small Dog De-Wormer
☞ Best For Puppies: Bayer Quad Small Dog De-Wormer, 4-Count
Before we check the details of the best dewormers for dogs, you must know what exactly are dog worms?
Let’s find out.
What Are Dog Worms?
Worms, also called helminths, are parasites that usually enter the body of a host and are capable of living and feeding off the host they have entered in.
There are many kinds of dog intestinal worms, usually divided into four common types:
All these worm types cause serious health dangers to dog’s health, but roundworms are the most dangerous of all types. Plus, these intestinal worms have their further species.
Initially, the roundworm larvae infect the dog’s intestinal tract. Later on, they can move to other body tissues and organs. When, as Toxocara canis, a roundworm larva matures, it moves to the lungs and then up to the airway. Afterward, it re-enters the intestine to complete its lifecycle.
On the other hand, Toxascaris leonina has a simpler lifecycle and doesn’t move.
Roundworms are diagnosed with a stool sample. If left untreated, they can be the cause of poor growth or, in severe conditions, can lead to death.
Hookworms are very short, typically 1/8 of an inch. They are blood-sucking parasites and suck heavy amounts of blood from the intestine of their host dog. They can cause anemia in dogs and can be fatal if not treated.
Just like Toxocara canis, hookworms also move about in their host’s body, enter the lungs, and then re-enter the intestine to grow mature.
Hookworms can only be detected microscopically through a stool test called ‘Fecal Flotation’
Whipworms are large intestinal parasites. They live in the cecum – the beginning of the large intestine. Hookworms don’t suck as many nutrients as other types of worms do.
In mild cases, they don’t cause any symptoms. But, if they make their way to intestinal tissues, they can be fatal and cause inflammation, weight loss, diarrhea, and sometimes anemia.
Vets can diagnose whipworms through the fecal sample. Whipworm eggs are not easy to find, though. Therefore, repeated fecal exams are recommended.
Tapeworms are small intestinal parasites. They are long (half a foot or more in length), flat, and segmented.
Tapeworms suck blood from the walls of the small intestine and extract nutrients. They don’t cause any serious harm until and unless the host dog is extremely active. When excreted, tapeworms pass on their segments in the affected dog’s stool.
Mostly, they are visible in a dog’s poop and look like little pieces of rice.
If you notice some of them in your dog’s poop or find him scooting his bottom along the ground, take your dog’s stool sample to a vet for diagnosis.
How Do You Know If A Dog Has Worms?
As a dog owner, you must be aware of the signs showing that your dog is contracted with parasitic worms. Though, the symptoms of each type of worm vary depending upon how the dog got affected.
Tapeworms, hookworms, and whipworms, if not present in large numbers, don’t cause major health threats. However, sometimes roundworms can make dogs seriously ill.
Parasitic worms, other than tapeworms, are rarely seen. And, you cannot tell if your dog is contracted by worms or not, just by looking.
The only way to help is, check their poop and get it microscopically tested.
However, the general symptoms of intestinal worms in dogs can include:
- Cough ( in case of roundworm and hookworm infections)
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Blocked intestine (in severe cases infestations)
- Bloody stool (can be bright red or dark purple)
- Swollen abdomen
- Abdominal pain
- Intestinal blockage or Pneumonia ( in serious cases of roundworm)
- Poor coat appearance
- Unexplained weight loss
- Increased appetite
If you see any of these signs in your dog, take his stool sample for microscopic examination and start the treatment instantly. Early treatment can save your dog from drastic health threats and prevent the worm from spreading.
Even if you don’t notice any such signs in your dog, a better and wise action is to get your pooch’s poop annually diagnosed.
How Can Dogs Catch Parasitic Worms?
Dogs can pick up parasitic worms in different ways. Some of the most common ways for dogs to get infected by worms are as follows:
1. From Mother Dog
Roundworms and hookworms can creep into the womb of the mother dog. Therefore, they can be transmitted to unborn puppies. Resultantly, the puppies are born with parasitic worm issues.
The other way a mother dog passes on her worms to young puppies is through lactation.
2. Swallowing Contaminated Soil
Another major source of getting parasitic worm infections for dogs is ingesting contaminated soil. Most of the roundworms, whipworms, and hookworms are found in contaminated soil.
Dogs get the infection while ingesting and grooming their fur with dirty soil. Keeping your dog clean can reduce the risk of getting infected.
3. Walking On Contaminated Soil
By walking on contaminated soil, your pet can pick up hookworms (they can penetrate through the skin) through the skin areas touching the infected soil, such as paws and the belly.
4. Consuming Other Infected Animals
Dogs can grab all four types of intestinal worms by eating any worm-infected animal, rodent, for example. The carcass of dead domestic animals, like, sheep can also contain harmful parasitic worms.
The only intestinal worms that can be transferred through fleas are tapeworms. In fact, this is the only way they can be contracted with a dog. If your dog eats a tapeworm-infected flea, he will get infected.
Top 5 Best Dewormer For Dogs
We have rounded up the top five de-wormers for dogs of different categories. No matter if you own a large-breed dog, a small-breed dog, a puppy, or maybe you are looking for one OVERALL best de-wormer, we got you covered.
Scroll down to discover the best de-wormers for dogs of different categories.
1. Excel Safe-Guard 4 Canine Dewormer
If your dog’s stomach is upset due to the ferocious worms, you must be searching high and lows for the best dog de-wormer, right?
In that case, a quick, effective, and all-around anti-parasitic product will be the best bet for you.
So, Excel Safe-Guard Dewormer is what you EXACTLY need. Not only is the de-wormer easy to use, but it kills four types of common worms as well. Just weigh your dog to get an idea of the correct dosage, follow the instructions given at the back of the package, and you will see the results immediately.
- Includes active ingredients like Fenbendazole – the major ingredient of ANY prescribed canine de-wormer
- Treats against the four usual worms, for instance, tapeworm, roundworm, hookworm, and whipworm
- Granules are easy to mix in the food. Hence, they are easy to feed
- Be it a 6-week old puppy, a pregnant dog, or a heartworm infected pooch (the de-wormer is safe for all)
- It contains three 4-gram pouches, and each pouch can treat 40 lbs for a 3-day treatment.
- A consecutive 3-day dose keeps worms away for six months.
- Safe and effective treatment for any breed
- Contains highly palatable granules
- Large dogs may need more than one pouch
- Some dogs started feeling lethargic after taking the dose
2. Durvet Triple Medium And Large Dog Wormer
Are you tired of spending your money on dog dewormers that cater only to small dog worms issues? Buying package after package is annoying.
If your dog is large and suffering from parasitic issues, Durvet Triple Medium and Large Dog Wormer is the way to go.
This wormer gives the greatest possible coverage against parasites and is easy to administer. Follow the directions at the back panel of the package and on the package insert.
Soon your dog will be WORM-FREE.
Like most wormers, this medicine kills only adult parasites. Hence, for better results, you need to administer the process again in two weeks.
- Specially designed for medium and large dogs (typically weighing between 25 lbs-200 lbs)
- Features a broad-spectrum formula containing ingredients like Pyrantel pamoate and Praziquantel
- Controls Tapeworms, Roundworms, Hookworms, and their further strains
- The package comes with 12 highly palatable, chewable, and flavored tablets
- Is a non-prescription wormer
- Tasty chewable tablets
- Works fast
- Easy dosage (can be given with or without food)
- Doesn’t eliminate whipworms
- Not for dogs under 25 lbs and puppies less than 12 weeks of age
- Not suitable for dogs with a sensitive stomach
3. Nemex 2 Liquid Dewormer For Dogs
Most of the dogs are picky eaters. They are choosy about their day-to-day food and never nibble at anything that doesn’t please their taste buds.
Such dogs, if contracted with worms or sick, are hard to give medications.
They won’t chew tablets. And, they also won’t eat food mixed with powdered de-wormers.
The only solution can be keeping a liquid dog de-wormer handy.
When it comes to treating pups and small dogs, Nemex 2 Oral Liquid is by far the best liquid dog de-wormer with a pleasant-tasting formulation. You can administer 5ml or 1-teaspoon for a dog of 10 lbs body weight.
- Safe for puppies as young as 2-weeks and small breeds
- Contains pyrantel pamoate as an active ingredient
- The suspension is intended as a single treatment for killing large roundworms and hookworms.
- Safe to use as a preventative to stop reinfestation in pups, adult dogs, or lactating bitches
- No side effects
- Highly palatable
- Easy- to-administer
- A great option for dogs who don’t like taking tablets
- Won’t treat tapeworms and whipworms
- Large dogs will require a larger amount of dosage
4. Sentry HC WormX Plus 7 Way Puppy & Small Dog De-Wormer
Small dog breeds are normally sensitive. They are susceptible to tummy upsets and allergies more than large dog breeds. Therefore, you can’t rely on every medicine while treating ANY kind of disease, as well as worm issues. And, you shouldn’t.
Only use medications specially designed for small breeds.
For de-worming, the best de-wormer for small breeds is Sentry HC WormX Plus. As the name implies, it works in a 7-Way action and is fast in killing worms.
- Formulated especially for small-breed dogs weighing between 6 lbs to 25 lbs
- Contains two active, safe, and veterinary-grade ingredients, pyrantel pamoate and praziquantel
- The 7-way action eliminates two strains of tapeworms, two strains of roundworms, and three strains of hookworm
- Capable of treating current infestations and prevents new ones
- Tablets come in the form of tasty chews
- One dose keeps your dog protected for 30 days (Normally, one dose is enough)
- Available without prescription
- Easy-to-administer (mix with food or give separately)
- Quick and effective
- Doesn’t remove whipworms
- Not for younger puppies (less than 12 weeks), pregnant and nursing females
- Not suitable for dogs above 25 lbs
5. Bayer Quad Small Dog De-Wormer, 4-Count
Nothing is more upsetting than finding out that your newly born puppy is affected by a heavy load of worms. True?
You might not know, but most of the puppies are born with worms.
If your puppy took birth with worms, that’s a piece of bad news, but the good news is, you can treat the worms at home with a broad-spectrum de-wormer safe for puppies and small dogs – Bayer Quad Small Dog De-Wormer!
- Effective against four common types of worms, tapeworms, hookworms, roundworms, and whipworms
- Contains all the active ingredients like praziquantel, pyrantel pamoate, and febantel
- The chewable tablets are beef-flavored and taste no less than a treat, which means even a picky eater won’t say NO!
- Fast-acting chews treat worms in a single dose.
- Quick, safe, and powerful
- Palatable beef-flavored chews
- Hassle-free administration (feed directly or mask in food)
- No prescription needed
- Can be only used for dogs ABOVE 3 weeks of age
- Dogs who don’t like beef may not take the medication willingly.
- Accidents like vomiting, bloody stool, and watery stool can happen.
Caution: The entire list of dog de-wormer is non-prescription at-home treatments, but it’s always wise to consult your vet for the proper diagnosis, treatment, and parasitic control. Always!
How does a dewormer work?
De-wormers come in many different formations, such as chew tablets, powdered form, granule form, or liquid form. Also, there are different types of de-wormers available for large breeds, small breeds, and puppies.
Almost all the types of worms reside in the intestinal tract of their host dog. In contrast, some of the worm types like tapeworms, hookworms, and roundworms target the stomach.
A de-wormer either diffuses the worm or makes it weaker and causes it to excrete its sucker through the intestinal tract in the dog's poop.
But the treatment cannot kill the parasitic eggs or larvae. So, the treatment is carried on up until the eggs hatch, larvae get mature, and are completely eliminated.
How long does it take for a dewormer to work?
Most of the de-wormers take two to three weeks to work. However, de-worming time can depend upon the intensity of infestation and the quality of the de-wormer.
How to choose the right dog dewormer?
Choosing the right de-wormer out of so many available in the pet market is a daunting task. If you do a proper investigation of the type of worm your dog is infected with, first, picking one best dog de-wormer becomes way easier.
Simply put, a dog de-wormer specifically formulated to kill roundworms will be useless in the treatment of tapeworm or hookworm. Makes sense?
A right dog de-wormer is the one that is suitable according to your pet’s specific worm infection type and does its job effectively and efficiently.
Luckily, most of the de-wormers are broad-spectrum products. They are also effective in treating multiple types of parasites and their further strains.
How often do I have to deworm my dog?
- De-worm your dog every two weeks until he is 12 weeks of age.
- After 12-weeks, de-worm him monthly until he reaches six months of age.
- From six-month and above, every dog needs de-worming every three months (for better protection against intestinal worms).
What to expect after deworming a dog?
Here is what you can expect after de-worming your dog:
- The first hours of de-worming: Most of the de-wormers start working instantly.
But, make sure your dog completely ingests the de-worming chew tablets or powder-based medicine. Some dogs try spitting the medicine immediately or throw up after taking the dosage.
If any such thing happens, ask your vet for advice.
- De-worming after a few days: After a few days, you'll notice a visible reduction in worm extraction in your dog's stool and an improvement in his health.
If you see any unexpected changes in your pet’s condition by following the treatment, consult your vet right away.
How can I deworm my dog myself?
You can opt for over-the-counter non-prescription de-wormers. They are highly effective, easy to administer, and have no side effects.
Other ways to de-worm your dog by yourself are some natural and proven home remedies. Such as:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Apple cider vinegar
Can worms in dogs go away on their own?
NEVER!!! Worms in dogs never go away on their own. However, some dogs can develop immunity against infections and live a happy life. But this is not the case for every dog out there.
Dogs will need some kind of medical assistance or de-worming to get rid of the worms. Else, untreated dogs can experience serious ailments, lethargy, damage to internal organs, or death.
So, medical treatment or at-home de-worming is a MUST!
Conclusion: Our Top Pick
So, now when you know some of the best de-wormer for dogs, it’s time to reveal our top pick.
The best dog de-wormer has to be effective against all kinds of worms and must be an easy-to-administer medicine.
Due to the high functionality, cost-effectiveness, and easy usage, we chose Excel Safe-Guard 4 Canine Dewormer as the winner. It eliminates all types of intestinal worms and is quick yet effective.
Plus, it’s safe for every dog (6-week of age and above), including nursing mom dogs and pregnant females.
We hope this guide has everything worth knowing about de-worming your dog and helped you to single the best de-wormer out for a fruitful treatment.
However, it’s imperative to consult your vet for a RIGHT diagnosis and a RIGHT treatment.