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Help !-natural way to get rid of cat's tapeworms ?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
One of our cats gets tapeworms like every two months, then we have *Force* this pill on her. I feel terrible about it cause I don't like the idea of forcing anyone to take a pill !! But she won't eat it smothered in tuna, etc. Anyways, she seems to be very susceptable to these worms (our other cats either don't get them or don't show signs of them).

Does anyone know a natural way to get rid of tapeworms in a cat and/or to keep them from coming back. I know, I know, treat the fleas since they are carriers but what else ? We treat the fleas but there are always some with the outdoor cats...

post #2 of 20
Have you tried Diatnaciuos (sp??) Earth? Its natural and does work for ridding worms.
post #3 of 20
Tapeworms come from fleas. You can't get rid of the tapeworms without getting rid of the fleas. When the cat eats the fleas, they get re-infested.
I had to try several different brands until I found one that my cat didn't find objectionable.
post #4 of 20
Thread Starter 
I had to try several different brands until I found one that my cat didn't find objectionable
several brands of tapeworm medicines ? I know, we have to get rid of the fleas... did you mean different brands of flea deterrant ?

I asked the vet for a different type of medicine to get rid of the worms, and they said this is the only one

Why don't they make tuna flavored, chewable cat medicine ??? or liquid ? *no* cat takes that voluntarily (unless its in food)

Erin... about diamataceous earth... is it safe internally ? I have used it for ant infestation, but I didn't know you could take it internally ?

Hey thanks for the great ideas, I really do appreciate the help !
post #5 of 20
Several brands of tapeworm medicine, actually, sorry about that.
Have you tried looking at PetMed.com?
I did try several over-the-counter types, even though the vet said they were ineffective. What ended up working was a vet-prescribed one, one pill per 5 lbs. of body weight, dissolved in canned-tuna-fish juice.
If you have a holistic-type pet store around, they might be your best source of information. The people at petsmart don't seem to know or care, but the local folks will even steer me to a different store for a special item.
Wanna hear something awful? Neighbor asked me what kind of worm medicine I used. I told her, she used it twice and said it didn't work at ALL. Finally, I said, "lemme look at the cat." It was VERY VERY pregnant! Didn't have worms at all. Had four sweet kittens the next day, though.
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
Wow, , your neighbor didn't *notice* the cat was about to have kittens ?

I checked PetMEd.com they didn't have anything but thanks for the suggestion, I will keep looking for another site. The pills you spoke of (dissolved in tuna juice) sound like the ones from our vet, but they must taste awful cause even just a little bit in tuna makes her turn up her nose (and this cat does love tuna usually).

If I find anything I will post it here ! Thanks again !
post #7 of 20
Originally posted by oceanmommy
Wow, , your neighbor didn't *notice* the cat was about to have kittens ?
Well, she did notice something was wrong! She just couldn't put her finger on the real cause. Funny, too, because she has two children of her own! I was real worried about the kittens, but they all turned out just fine.
post #8 of 20
Forgot to add this part, oops!
I found this about tape worms: http://www.placervillevet.com/feline...0parasites.htm
If you see little short white worms (1/2 inch long or less), these are probably tapeworm segments. When the segments dry they look like grains of brown rice and may stick to your cat's hair. If you see anything like this, let us know and we will dispense tapeworm medicine to use at home. We don't really worry much about tapeworms - unless a kitten is already weak from other disease or severely undernourished, tapeworms do little harm, and Dipylidium caninum, the common tapeworm of cats and dogs, is harmless to people. If you see segments under your cat's tail or in the litter box, let us know. Prescription tapeworm drugs are extremely effective and cause no discomfort whatever. Non-prescription tapeworm medications are unpleasant for the cat and don't work very well.

Here are names of prescription tapeworm medicines:
Praziquantal (Droncit Rx, others) and epsiprantal (Cestex Rx) (from:http://www.vetinfo4cats.com/cworms.html)
Maybe you can get the one of these that you haven't already used. By putting in the name of each medication in www.google.com, I found places that sell them, no Rx required. One is: http://www.onlineveterinarypractice....ic/droncit.htm

Good luck!!
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 
Wow ! Thank you so much !

I always thought a cat's tapeworms could transmit to humans : This is my biggest cause for concern (with a toddler who indiscrimanently mouths things) plus they are gross !

And the poor cat... she has less appetite IMO when she has worms, once we give her meds she eats more. But she seems otherwise very healthy.

Jane, do you know offhand any good flea treatments that don't use chemicals ? I haven't searched for this lately and I am sure there's lots out there but you are such a wealth of cat knowledge I thought I'd just ask first
post #10 of 20
All I have read about diamataceous earth it is ok to eat, actually we all eat it as its in flour ect. Althought there is DE out there that has other stuff mixed in and you wouldnt want to eat that.
I think if you do a search on google for it you will come up with lots of info.

I feed our cats DE when I think they have worms, I mix in tuna juice and they gobble it right up.
post #11 of 20
Diatomaceous earth is the skeletons of unicellular ocean organisms such as algae and plankton; how would it get into flour? I just don't see eating it as safe, myself. It's used in the garden against slugs, etc. where it works by cutting into their skin and dessicating them. Not something that I personally would feed an animal.

As for tuna-flavored pills, they are available! You can ask your vet to order them from a veterinary compounding pharmacy. I will ask my best friend who's a vet what the name of one is that she uses; we're getting our anti-anxiety meds for our cat compounded there. They essentially turn the pill into a tasty treat.

You can also ask your vet for an el cheapo device called the pill popper, which is just a little tube setup that helps you get the pill to the back of the cat's throat where she can't spit it out. It's a lot easier than trying to give a pill disguised as something else, if you have a cat that eats around pills, and a whole lot easier than trying to crank a cranky cat's jaws open to give a pill!

HTH, Jane
post #12 of 20
OK, just checked with my vet friend, who says:

1) use frontline to get rid of fleas; it's not toxic to the animal or your kids;

2) don't feed diatomaceous earth to an animal! it will lacerate his digestive tract;

3) your vet should know about how to get the meds made up into tuna treats from the compounding pharmacy; and

4) another option is taking the cat to the vet to get dewormed with a shot if giving pills is really not an option.

She seconded the statement about the non-prescription alternatives being ineffective. She also suggested looking to see whether there's a holistic/homeopathic vet in your area if that's a route you want to investigate (yes they do exist!)

Hope this helps, Jane
post #13 of 20
Children aren't at risk for tapeworms because the eggs have to hatch in the flea to be viable to infect a mammal. It's possible that your toddler could eat a flea, but it's less likely than eating an egg case.
As far as fleas, once you get them to a low level, you can use a nit-comb to get them out of the fur. After we eradicated the fleas from our house, (got rid of the carpet) we combed the cats every night and occasionally removed the odd flea or two. We tried to use the combs for our kittens when they were too little for any chemical, but it was woefully ineffective on a large scale infestation. Petroleum jelly can help imobilize the fleas once you comb them until you can squish them. I used to comb with one hand, dab with jelly on a q-tip with the other, then pick up some tweezers and get the buggers.
I would recommend looking into the behind-the-neck drops just because they are very effective. I do not know anything about them except that they do work well.
post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
We have used advantage (chemicals on neck) for our cats previous flea treatments... I will try frontline and be assured that if dd accidentaly touches it she won't suffer serious damage.

we even have a pill popper ! this one cat (the one who always gets tapeworms) is so sketchy... we have even taken her to the vet to get the pill. I will ask about the special compounding lab... it makes total sense, I knew SOMEONE could make those pills yummy ! (why aren't they all ?)

Thanks Apricot/Jane for reminding me about the tapeworm lifecycle... yes she'd have to eat a flea to get TWs... but I thought I remembered learning that a tapeworm segmant can grow a new worm if ingested ? I should just search google, I know, but now dd has woken up ! Maybe tomorrow...

Thank you all so much I truly truly appreciate you taking the time to help me
post #15 of 20
Hey Jane, why is it that we turn up on the threads dealing with creepy crawly critters??

Oceanmommy, good luck getting your cat debugged and dewormed!
post #16 of 20
oceanmommy- Your cat is lucky to have such a good person to take care of her. Good luck.
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
thank you all so much
post #18 of 20
Here are some articles to educate yourselves about Diatomaceous earth.

In these articles, it explains why there is DE in your flour and why it is good to feed your animals.
Just make sure you use food grade.

Oh and why would your vet not want you to feed your pet DE, Hmmm maybe because the Med's he sells are more expensive?
post #19 of 20
Thread Starter 
The second link didn't work for me. The first and third sounded more like sales pitches than science to me...

It said DE was in flour only as a trace mineral, not a food additive or anything, just as stuff you can't get rid of completely.

I google searched in vain to find info about humans ingesting DE safely, found squat, I am not yet convinced...

It seems like if it could cut up insects, and cut up your lungs if breathed in, it could also cut up your insides ? Maybe so minutely that you don't notice , but still.

I do appreciate the ideas though, and the time to post links, etc. Thank you.
post #20 of 20
My cat is very suseptible to tapeworms too, my vet said not to worry about them but I agree...they are gross! I did see a natural de-wormer in my health food store but I didn't buy it. They do have them out there, maybe your local health food store might carry it? Sorry I'm not more help!
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