It’s essential to keep your dog’s deworming medication up to date. If your dog becomes infected with worms, it can have serious health consequences. But, it is equally critical that you give the correct dosage of deworming medicine to your dog. So, What Happens If You Give A Dog Too Much Wormer? Naturally, there will be side effects.
Let us see what all you should know before you begin deworming your dog.
In this article, we will cover:
- What Happens If You Give A Dog Too Much Wormer?
- How Often Should You Deworm Your Dog?
- And more…
What Happens If You Give A Dog Too Much Wormer? 6 Adverse Effects
If you give your dog too much wormer, they may develop unpleasant side effects that range from moderate signs like drooling and vomiting to severe signs like seizures, ataxia, blindness, and heart arrhythmia. It is best to consult your veterinarian if you think your dog had more than recommended dose.
Although most deworming medicines come with instructions for dosage and have a safety margin if you unintentionally give more, overdosing on dewormers is potentially risky. Why?
Anti-worming medications have incredibly toxic ingredients that are used to get rid of parasites and worms in your dog.
Because these treatments are so powerful and possibly dangerous, giving them to your dog in greater doses than suggested might produce a series of unpleasant symptoms. Too much quantity of some types of wormers can cause organ damage, organ failure, and even death.
As a pet parent, here is what you should be aware of so that you can treat your furry friend at the earliest:
Drooling is a common trait among dogs. Almost all dogs drool periodically. However, you must know if there is something wrong when your dog is excessively drooling.
If you see your dog releasing more saliva from its mouth than it normally would after feeding dewormers, it is an indication that your dog has been administered an incorrect dosage or has an allergic reaction.
Generally, vomiting is common after giving dewormers to your dogs. It could be because of the taste of the medicine, allergy, or even an overdose.
If you see your dog vomiting, ask your vet to prescribe medicines. Typically, vomiting stops within 24 hours if nothing is serious. However, if your dog continues vomiting for 2-3 days, immediate medical intervention is the need of the hour.
Your dog is most likely suffering a seizure if it appears disoriented and falls on its side on the floor after consuming deworming medications. It is because the overdose has caused poisoning in your dog.
Other signs that indicate your dog is having a seizure are- foam in mouth, drooling, unconsciousness, chomping tongue movement, and stiff body.
For immediate assistance, you need to time its seizures and lay your dog away from furniture that could harm it in any way. Make sure you are calm and take it to the vet as soon as possible.
4. Heart Arrhythmia
According to the PetMD Editorial, Heart Arrhythmia is irregular heartbeats. It means your dog’s heart might beat too fast, too slow, or even skip beats. It occurs when your dog is significantly overdosed by drugs.
If your dog suffers from it, the vet will conduct an ECG or EKG and X-rays to know the problem exactly. After examining all the scans, they will treat it. In some cases, your dog might require hospitalization.
Ataxia is the incoordination in the dog. If the wormer overdose has affected your dog greatly, you will see your dog is facing difficulty in walking as it constantly stumbles and falls down.
According to Tammy Hunter, DVM, and Robin Downing, DVM at the VCA Hospitals, ataxia can be treated by vets with supportive care and pain management. Vets will schedule regular checkups for such dogs to analyze their progress.
We know this sounds really scary, but it is true that your dogs can go blind from wormer toxicity. Your dog can become partially blind, intermittently blind, or worst, completely blind due to this.
The major indicators of blindness in a dog are enlarged pupils, redness and cloudiness in the eyes, bumping into things, and being unable to find food and toys.
How Often Should You Deworm Your Dog?
The main factor that determines the oftenness of deworming your dogs is the risk of infection. If you live in an area where parasitic infections are common, your dog will need more deworming sessions than usual.
Otherwise, in low-risk households, deworming usually takes place after conducting fecal tests on your dogs. Depending on the fecal results, your vet can come up with a plan to deworm your dog.
However, generally, the puppies go to the vet for deworming every two weeks once they turn two weeks old. After that, as your puppy turns 12 weeks old, they are dewormed every month.
Then, when your dog reaches six months, its immune system has developed enough to keep them worm-free if your vet administers deworming medicine once every three months.
Finally, as your dog becomes an adult, they are dewormed once a year to prevent infestations from heartworms, tapeworms, and other parasites.
How Many Deworming Tablets Are Safe For My Dog?
Different dogs can handle drugs differently. Thus, it’s important to remember that anthelmintic and vermifugal medications can be quite hazardous to your dog if you administer them inappropriately.
According to a study conducted by RA Lovell, ivermectin and piperazine toxicity is responsible for causing ataxia, behavioral disturbances, tremors, mydriasis, weakness, apparent blindness, hypersalivation, and coma within 24 hours of taking the medicine.
As a result, it’s critical that you only take them on prescription as advised by your veterinarian as they will be able to guide you best about how many deworming tablets are suitable for your dog.
Can I Feed Wormers After Meal To My Dog?
Although there is no best time to feed deworming medicines to your dog, you can still feed wormers after meals to your dogs.
We propose giving it to them in the morning after breakfast or after their stroll so that nausea after taking medication does not disrupt their daily routine.
You will also be more likely to be around to keep a check on the dog afterward in case it experiences any other side effects.
Furthermore, when existing worms within your dog come into touch with the drug, they emit toxins, and these poisons might create a sense of unease. This sensation does not last long, but it can be minimized if your dog has been properly fed beforehand.
However, this information should always be included in the instructions that come with the prescription, and that should be followed more strictly than the advice we’ve shared here.
Certain dewormers function better on an empty stomach. Then the preceding advice is erroneous. Always pay attention to the label!
Is Deworming Fatal For My Dog?
It’s highly unusual that a dog would die after worming treatments. Most worming medicines are checked at a variety of dosages to get the correct dosage for dogs.
Your dog is more likely to die from an active worm infection than from the worming medication itself. The American Kennel Club quotes that if worms in dogs are not treated timely, they can cause severe health concerns as they damage the internal organs of your pet.
Generally, puppies die more often due to parasite infestations than dogs as they are weak and underdeveloped. One such worm infection is from roundworms.
Roundworms are present in puppies since birth. If left untreated, they are responsible for poor growth and the death of newborns.
What Is The Right Age To Deworm Your Dog And Puppy?
Puppies are more vulnerable to worm infestations than adult dogs. Thus, they need more frequent deworming treatments. It is because adult dogs have a fully developed immune system. Also, they do not eat everything they come across on the streets.
Thus, deworming starts when your pet is still a puppy. Veterinarians begin deworming when your puppy is two weeks old. After that, deworming is continued on a regular basis as per your vet’s advice.
Can Dogs Have An Allergic Reaction To Wormer?
Dewormers can have side effects on dogs occasionally. Dogs tend to lose appetite, vomit or have diarrhea for a few hours after taking the wormer. Since these symptoms do not last long, you need not worry much.
But, in rare occurrences, some dogs have an allergic reaction to the wormer medicines administered orally. Indicators of an allergic reaction include pale gums, difficulty breathing, convulsions, and collapse.
According to Dr. Jennifer Kvamme, DVM at PetMD worm preventive medicines like ivermectin and milbemycin can cause swollen face, itchiness, incoordination, and seizures in your dog even if given an adequate dose.
If you see any such unusual behavior in your dog after taking the medicines, it is best to speak to your vet as sometimes the allergic reaction can turn severe and cause death.
4 Home Remedies For Deworming Your Dog
If you want your dog to have a worm-free body, your dog must get the appropriate diet in addition to deworming doses. So, here are four food options that you must inculcate in your dog’s diet to solve the problem of worms in the long term:
1. Coconut Oil
Ringworms, tapeworms, giardia, and other parasite infestations are very common in dogs. Coconut oil works by converting the lauric acid present in the oil to monolaurin. This way, it treats the parasites and worms without killing good bacteria in your dog’s gut.
Add one teaspoon (for small dogs) or one tablespoon (for big dogs) of coconut oil to your dog’s food daily to get rid of toxic parasites without using harmful drugs.
Carrots are abundant in nutrients like pro-vitamin A, vitamin B, C, D, and K, calcium, iron, and riboflavin. The pro-vitamin A in carrots is responsible for killing the worm eggs in your dog’s stomach.
So, grate a raw carrot and add two to four teaspoons of it to your dog’s bowl as a treat. We are sure your dog will love the crunchy snack.
3. Pumpkin Seeds
Raw or cooked pumpkin seeds are safe for your dogs as they have tremendous health benefits. Pumpkin seeds have the amino acid cucurbitacin that will paralyze the intestinal worms in your dogs.
Once a day daily, give your dog a quarter teaspoon of ground or whole seeds per ten pounds of body weight until the worms are flushed out of your dog’s system.
Deworming medicines can hamper the growth of good bacteria in your dog’s digestive tract. These bacteria aid digestion and make sure your dog releases firm stools. Thus, kefir restores the good bacteria in your dog’s system.
You can serve kefir separately or mix it in your dog’s food as per your choice. Give one teaspoon or one tablespoon to small breeds and three tablespoons to large breeds daily.
Dos and Don’ts Of Deworming Your Dog
Lastly, there are some dos and don’ts of administering deworming medicines to your dog that you must look at:
1. Don’t Deworm Only One Pet
If you are a pet parent to more than one dog, you might wonder if deworming one of your dogs would do the trick for the rest of the pack. But, this is not true.
The pets that do not get dewormed could become a source of parasites that can put the health of all your canine friends at risk.
2. Do Make Sure That Your Dog Swallows Wormer
Generally, a dog spits or throws out the wormer as soon as you administer it orally. At times, they even vomit after a while. It happens because the deworming medicine tastes bitter, dogs do not like the taste.
So, make sure your dog swallows the medicine completely. Otherwise, your efforts will be futile. Additionally, you can try to use anti-parasite creams meant for topical use to avoid such situations.
3. Don’t Medicate Your Pet On Your Own
One of the most common mistakes pet parents make is buying the deworming medicine on their own without consulting the veterinarian. We will never recommend this at all.
Your dog’s veterinarian advises the wormer after carefully examining their lifestyle, underlying health conditions, age, and breed. This way, they can choose the best wormer for your dog. So, you must take their advice into account.