By Elaine from Providence, RI
Sergeant's Vetscription Worm Away 7 for cats or dogs is an OTC product that really works! My cats tell me that the worm is extinguished in 3 hours flat. I break up the tablets (they resemble psyllium) into small pieces according to the size of the cat. Also D-Worm tablets for dogs from Petco really zero in on the tapeworm and zap it in 5 - 7 hours. I am happy with the results as there are no side effects. Even a critically ill animal can handle this medication.
Although they are labeled for dogs, the ingredients are purrfectly safe for use on cats and there is plenty of tablet left for the usual 9-10 day later second dose. Both products should be available at Petco.
You must get the medication from the Veterinarian. Over the counter medication does not work. I have worked for a vet for over 27 years. Good luck.
They get tapeworms from ingesting a flea or part of a flea. So in addition to treating for the tapeworms, you need to get rid of the fleas. On the cat, and in the cat's living areas. You need a medication specifically for the tapeworms.
We went through this when we took in a kitten about a year and a half ago. He was less than a pound when we rescued him, and he was too little for flea control medication. I had to wash him with dish-washing liquid and comb him frequently to try and control the fleas. When he was big enough, I tried topical flea control (which took care of all the worms EXCEPT tapeworms), and topical tapeworm control. But it never really got rid of the problem. My other two (grown) cats did get fleas and tapeworms from the kitten, but we got them under control quickly. Then they were fine (no fleas or tapeworms), and the people in the house weren't getting flea bites -- only the kitten.
Finally, I documented exactly when I was giving the flea control and tapeworm control (they're more expensive than oral meds, but I've had to give oral meds to cats before, and I was willing to pay more to make it easier), and went back to the vet's office with the dates I had given him the topical meds & when I'd see the tapeworms again. They gave him one dose of an oral flea medication. It kills all the fleas on the cat, and can be given daily. It is not the same as the month-long oral flea control medication for dogs -- they don't make that for cats. They also gave him one dose of an oral tapeworm control. They said it was possible I'd need to do a couple more doses of the flea control, but I never did. That took care of everything. It was SUCH a relief to finally be rid of those nasty tapeworms.
So, yes, if you have one cat with tapeworms, other cats can get it. Because if you have tapeworms, you probably have fleas. If one cat has fleas, the others will probably get them. I've heard of people getting over the counter medication for tapeworms, but I don't know what kind. You need to do the correct dosing for the weight of the cat. I think your best bet is to go to the vet and get the oral medication. In our experience, it's much more effective (than the topical). Best of luck -- I hope you get the fleas and tapeworms under control quickly.
You need Tapeworm de-worm medicine from the Vet. they have stronger med's than pet stores do.
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