How to Choose a Cat Wormer

Worming your cat should be a simple task, but when you look on the shelves or browse online, there are so many different options. Which one should you choose?

Before they can be registered and authorized for sale, all medications must be tested for safety and effectiveness, so you can be confident that they will all work. However, some will protect against some worms and not against others, so it is probably a good idea to chat to your veterinarian and work out which parasites are a problem in your area, which ones you should be treating your cat for, and at which times of the year.

Intestinal worms tend to occur year-round in cats, but some are restricted to certain geographical areas. There are also differences between indoor and outdoor cats, with hunters being at a much higher risk of contracting parasites. Your veterinarian will be able to advise you which worms you need to treat for in your home state.

Here is an overview of a few products used and which worms they cover.

Most of the worming options for cats are in tablet, paste or topical liquid form. So which products treat which worms? The intestinal worms which affect cats in the U.S.A. are :

  • roundworms (Toxocara cati and Toxascaris leonina)
  • hookworms (Ancylostoma tubaeforme mainly)
  • tapeworms (Dipylidium caninum, Taenia taeniaeformis and very occasionally Echinococcus multilocularis).

Some products will treat all intestinal worms, others only some. Some products combine intestinal worm treatment with heartworm prevention or sometimes even flea treatment.

For a complete parasite control program, you should ideally be able to tick off all of the boxes for the parasites listed. You may need to choose more than one product to get complete coverage.

When selecting a product, you probably will also want to consider how easy it is to give tablets to your cat or if you would prefer to keep your fingers away from those razor-sharp teeth. Speak with your veterinarian to get advice as to which is the best option for your cat.

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