Ultimate guide: How to protect your cat from worms?

Par Pawtounes 8 Min de Lecture

The different types of worms your cat can contract

In general, your cat may be subject to three types of internal parasites.


Roundworms, also known as roundworms, are unfortunately common in cats. Resembling small white spaghetti, these parasites generally live in the animal’s intestine, feeding on its contents. Kittens can even be infected at birth, as the larvae of these worms can be found in their mother’s milk. In fact, their life cycle takes place in several stages, with larvae migrating from the intestine, through the liver and lungs, before returning to the intestine to become adult worms.


Tapeworms are another common type of parasite your cat can contract. These parasites also live in the animal’s intestine, feeding on the food passing through it. They are often transmitted by fleas, which can be infected by the larvae of these worms. If your cat ingests an infected flea, the tapeworm’s life cycle can begin. These worms fragment into small pieces when they release eggs, and these fragments may be visible in the animal’s stool, resembling grains of rice.


Heartworms, although less common, are among the most dangerous internal parasites for your cat. They are transmitted by mosquitoes which, after biting an infected animal, can transfer the larvae of these worms to another animal. These parasites colonize the animal’s pulmonary arteries and heart, causing progressive heart disease that can be fatal.

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How cats contract worms

While worms can be transmitted in a variety of ways, they all require a host (i.e. your cat) to come into contact with their eggs or larvae.

Contact with infected excrement

Whether in the open air or in the litter box, sharing space with infected animals always poses a risk. This is particularly true of roundworms and flatworms. If your cat comes into contact with infected feces, it runs the risk of ingesting worm eggs, which then hatch in its digestive system.

Through flea ingestion

Fleas are one of the main causes of tapeworm transmission. When a flea-infested cat grooms itself, it can easily swallow a flea containing tapeworm larvae. Once in the cat’s intestine, these larvae develop into adult worms. Hence the importance of a good flea treatment.

Ingestion of infected rodents

Cats who like to hunt present a particular risk, as rodents can be carriers of roundworms and tapeworms. If your cat eats an infected rodent, it is ingesting worm larvae or eggs. Added to this is the risk of mosquitoes infecting your cat with heartworms. That’s why making your environment safe and entertaining your cat indoors can be a good idea. Cat trees remain an excellent option for delighting your feline while minimizing risk.

Signs of worm infestation in cats

Signs of worm infestation in cats can vary depending on the type of worm and the severity of the infestation. Mild infestations may present no symptoms, while severe infestations may cause a variety of signs and symptoms, including :

Behavioral changes

Have you noticed a change in your cat’s attitude or behavior? A cat that is normally active and full of energy can become listless and less interested in playing. This may be due to an infestation of worms, which literally suck the energy out of your cat. In addition, neurological disorders can occur in kittens severely infected with roundworms, causing coordination problems. Fortunately, these symptoms generally disappear once the cat has been treated. It’s a good idea to use your knowledge of stress in cats to detect the first signs.

Loss of weight and appetite

Sudden weight loss or lack of interest in food are common signs of worm infestation, especially heartworms, which can cause nausea, vomiting and reduced appetite. If your cat seems less interested in food or is losing weight despite a normal appetite, it may be time to have parasites checked.

Presence of worms in feces or fur

Although not always visible to the naked eye, the presence of worm fragments or eggs in your cat’s stools is a clear sign of infestation. In some cases, you may even see flatworm fragments (which look like grains of rice) around the cat’s anus. To make sure your cat isn’t infested, check its stools and back coat regularly.

How to protect your cat from worms

There are several steps you can take to prevent worm infestations.

Flea prevention

As mentioned earlier, fleas often carry worms. So one of the best ways to prevent worms is to treat your cat for fleas. Use quality flea products, such as topical treatments or flea collars, to prevent your cat from ingesting a flea when grooming.

Litter hygiene

Clean your cat’s litter regularly to reduce the risk of transmitting worm eggs, which may be present in the animal’s feces. Use a scoop to remove feces every day, then clean the litter box thoroughly every week. The tray should be cleaned with hot, soapy water to kill any worm eggs that may be hiding there.

Regular control of excrement

As mentioned above, one of the most striking signs of worm infestation is the presence of worm fragments in your cat’s stool. That’s why it’s a good idea to check your pet’s stools regularly, so as to detect any abnormalities as soon as possible.

Feeding your cat

A quality diet can help support your cat’s immune system and prevent worm infestation. Make sure your cat’s diet is rich in proteins, fats and vitamins to boost his immune system and his ability to resist parasites. See our guide to feeding your cat.

There are drugs on the market to help prevent and treat worm infestations. Dewormers are available in many forms, including tablets, liquids and topical treatments. Some act by killing the worms, while others paralyze the parasites so that they are expelled naturally by the animal. Consult your veterinarian to discuss the best choice for your cat and its lifestyle.

Keeping your cat healthy and worm-free

Preventing worms in cats is an important part of your feline’s health and well-being. Protecting your pet from these parasites is an act of compassion and responsibility. Your vigilance and commitment are key to ensuring your four-legged friend’s health and happiness. Never forget that information is one of the best weapons against parasites. So continue to educate yourself, stay informed, and take all the necessary precautions to combat these undesirables.

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Par Pawtounes
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