Worms are a common cause of veterinary visits. There are various types of worms that affect kittens. Roundworms are passed through breast milk. Tapeworm infestation occurs when kittens swallow fleas containing eggs while grooming which hatch in the gastrointestinal tract.
They can be found in stool or hindquarters and look similar to grains of rice. Hookworms are passed through ingestion or skin contact. They reside in the small intestines and lead to anemia. Heartworms reside in the heart muscles. They are passed by mosquitoes.
Deworming a kitten regularly once every two weeks up to 3 months followed by once every month until 6 months and once every 3 months thereafter helps to keep them at bay.
Vomiting, diarrhea containing worms, anemia, weight loss, distended abdomen, and inappetence are common signs of worms. Most dewormers contain pyrantel pamoate, milbemycin oxime, praziquantel, fenbendazole, piperazine, and ivermectin.
Best Kitten Dewormer
This product is made by Bayer Animal Health for the treatment of tapeworms. It contains praziquantel as the active ingredient.
- Each tablet contains 23mgs of praziquantel as the active ingredient
- Used actively to remove tapeworms
- Does not require prescription from a veterinarian
- Can be used in cats over 6 weeks of age
- Can be given on its own or mixed with food
- Each pack contains 3 tablets
Praziquantel works by affecting the permeability of membranes of worms. It causes an influx of calcium into the body of worms through the membranes. This causes muscular contraction leading to spasms, paralysis, and finally death of tapeworms.
- Effective against tapeworms
- Can be used in both dogs (over 4 weeks) and cats (over 6 weeks).
- Does not need a prescription and can be bought over the counter
- Easy to administer either in food or on its own
- Dosage is indicated on the product
- Has few or no side effects
- Made by a Bayer which is a reliable reputable pharmaceutical company
- Only active against tapeworms
- Can only be given in kittens over 6 weeks
- Does not sealed by the company for safety
This dewormer contains praziquatel which is only effective against tapeworms. It can be given to kittens over 6 weeks of age and dogs over 4 weeks of age.
This is a broad-spectrum dewormer is effective against tapeworms, hookworms & roundworms. It contains 18.2 mgs praziquantel and 72.6 mgs pyrantel pomoate as the active ingredients.
- Manufactured by Bayer animal division
- Broad-spectrum dewormer effective against tapeworms, roundworms, and hookworms
- Can be used in kittens over 1 month and over 1.5 lbs
- Each pack contains 50 tablets
- One is effective for cats weighing 4 to 8 lbs
- Made in Germany
Each pack contains 50 tablets which is efficient especially in animal shelters (value for money). It is effective against roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms. Safely used in cats over a month old weighing not less than 1.5 lbs
- Has a long shelf life
- The pack comes with the manufactures instructions on how to administer
- Can be given on its own or mixed together with wet food.
- It comes highly recommended by most veterinarians and is the de facto dog and cat dewormer
- Not safe for use in nursing and pregnant cats as it can harm the kittens
- To be used only in cats over 1 month old and over 1.5 lbs
- It is expensive especially in households with few numbers of cats
- Has a smell that can make cats suspicious making it hard to administer
This dewormer comes highly recommended by veterinarians. It’s effective against tapeworms, hookworms, and roundworms. It is also efficient for animal shelters.
Healex cat dewormers are broad-spectrum dewormers active against both tapeworms and roundworms. It can also be used in kittens.
- Active against both tapeworms and roundworms
- Can be used in kittens
- Each pack contains 10 dewormers
- Contains an E booklet with instructions
- Indicated for cats over 6 weeks of age
- Small and easily breakable
These dewormers contain 10 small and easily breakable tablets making them easy to administer. They can also be crushed into powder and mixed with wet food. They are active against both tapeworms and roundworms.
- Effective against both tapeworms and roundworms
- Each park contains 10 tablets (value for money)
- Tablets are small in size and are easily breakable
- Are safe without any documented side effects
- Has an E-book included which gives the manufacturer’s instructions on how to administer the tablets
- Can be given on its own or mixed together with food
- Efficient especially in multi-cat households
- A preventative flea collar is also available which helps keep off fleas for close to 8 months. Fleas are known intermediate hosts for tapeworms.
- Not safe for kittens below 6 weeks
- Does not treat heartworms
- Not safe for nursing and pregnant cats
These dewormers are effective against tapeworms and roundworms. They also offer good value for money with each pack containing 10 tablets.
CATNDOG pyrintel dewormer works effectively against both tapeworms and roundworms. Each bottle contains 3 tablets.
- Effective against tapeworms and roundworms
- Each bottle contains 3 tablets
- 1 tablet should be given to kittens weighing 4kgs or 8 lbs
- Does not need a prescription for purchase
- Recommended for cats over the age of 6 months
This dewormer comes packed in a box (1.57 inches by 2.36inches). Each bottle contains 3 tablets and can be broken down and mixed with food or given on its own.
- Removes both tapeworms and roundworms
- Can be used for kittens above 6 weeks of age
- Does not require a prescription from a veterinarian
- Good for a household with 0ne or two cats
- Offers 100% guaranteed affectivity
- Dosage is indicated on the bottle. One tablet per 8.8 lbs
- It is only effective for roundworms and tapeworms. Has no effect on hookworms, lungworms, and heartworms
- Not safe for use in pregnant and nursing cats
- Kittens should be over 6 weeks of age when being dewormed
- Each bottle contains only 3 tablets therefore not efficient for multi-cat households
- Price point is on the high side for only 3 tablets
- Tablets are slightly big therefore can make administration difficult for cats
This dewormer is best used in households with one or two kittens. It’s effective against roundworms and tapeworms. Each bottle contains 3 tablets.
This is an all-natural no chemical dewormer. It can also be used to prevent worm infestations. It can be used for both cats and dogs.
- Liquid dewormer
- It is chemical-free and made from natural ingredients
- Used in the prevention of tapeworms
- Can be used in both cats and dogs
- Improve digestive health
- Can be used in kittens as well as adult cats
- Used three times annually
This liquid dewormer is made from organic herbs. It is used to prevent tapeworm infestation in both adult cats as well as kittens.
- It’s is in liquid form making it easier to administer.
- It comes with a liquid dropper making fast and easy to give kittens
- Used only thrice in a year
- Has no chemicals. It is made from organic herbs
- Prevents worm infestation rather than treat.
- Has no known adverse side effects
- Improves digestive health
- Can be used in both pregnant and nursing cats
- Used for prevention rather than treatment
This dewormer not only improves digestive health it also actively prevents worm infestation. It is made from organic herbs. It is safe for use in both cats and dogs with no reported cases of adverse side effects. Its liquid formula makes it easy for administration and also the inclusion of a liquid dropper.
The importance of deworming kittens
Worms are an important cause for veterinary clinic visits. They can be very detrimental to the health of kittens as they leach valuable nutrients from the kitten’s gastrointestinal tract.
The most common worms affecting kittens include hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms, lungworms, and heartworms though rare.
Most worms are passed through ingestion of stool of food contains eggs or larva of worms or through intermediate hosts e.g. fleas in tapeworms and mosquitoes in heartworms.
Hookworms which like to reside in the small intestines suck blood and can lead to anemia and bloody diarrhea. They are passed to kittens either through penetration of the skin or ingestion of feces containing eggs of hookworms.
Roundworms on the other hand are passed through breast milk to kittens and end up in the intestines. Heartworms are also known to cause serious respiratory complications. They can lead to coughing and asthma-like attacks.
Tapeworms are passed through the ingestion of fleas during grooming. They contain the eggs and act as intermediate hosts. They can cause an obstruction in the gut which can be fatal leading to death.
Common signs of worm infestation include:
- Vomiting that may have worms
- Diarrhea that may have worms
- Loss of appetite
- Weight loss
- Unthrifty hair coat
- Segments of tapeworms can be seen on the hindquarters
- Bloated or rounded distended belly
- Difficulty breathing
- Failure to thrive
- Irritation around the anus
- Pale mucous membranes
Worms are usually diagnosed by doing a stool test. Eggs of worms are observed in the stool through a microscope.
When to deworm kittens
Kittens should be dewormed from 2 weeks of age. This is because as mentioned above, roundworms are passed to kittens through breast milk.
This should be continued every two weeks until the kittens are 3 months old. Thereafter deworming should be carried out once every month up until 6 months when they are considered adult cats.
Over 6 months both cats and dogs should be dewormed once every three months. Multiple cat households and outdoor cats however should be dewormed more often.
The manufactures instructions should be followed to avoid adverse side effects. Most dewormers are given as per the bodyweight of the kitten. However, after drug administration, vomiting, diarrhea, and release of dead worms in the stool are normal.
It is also important to get rid of intermediate hosts which help to propagate the worm’s lifecycle. In the case of tapeworms, good flea control is important. This can be done through either use of collars, oral medication, or topical insecticides.
Clearing bushes and stagnant water goes a long way in controlling mosquitoes. Rodents also act as an intermediate host in some instances and should therefore be controlled. Good sanitation practices around the home also help to keep worms and their intermediate hosts at bay.
Worms affecting kittens rarely affect human beings and therefore owners should not be worried.
Worms are such as hookworms, roundworms, and tapeworms are commonly found in kittens. They can affect kittens which can lower their body defense against infections.
They usually get infected either by ingesting food material or feces containing the eggs of worms. Ingestion of intermediate hosts such as rodents and fleas can also lead to infection.
In the case of roundworms, they are passed to the kittens through breast milk. Deworming the queen soon after birth can help prevent transmission. Signs of worms usually include pot belly appearance, vomiting, diarrhea, a rough hair coat, anemia in the case of hookworms among others.
Pet owners can at times see worms expelled through stool, vomit, or in the case of tapeworms; segments can be seen on the hindquarters. If observed a visit to the veterinarian will help confirm the diagnosis by observing eggs in a stool sample.
Regular deworming helps to prevent serious infestations. Kittens should be dewormed from 2 weeks of age. This is followed up until 6 months where they should be dewormed once every three months.
Eradicating intermediate hosts also helps in preventing worm infestations. This includes flea control, eradicating rodents, and overall observing good sanitary practices.
Best Kitten Dewormer
Here are our reviews of today's best kitten dewormers on the market.
- Bayer Tapeworm
- Bayer Drontal