Worms in Cats: What an Owner Should Know

Deforestation, poaching and the destruction of the natural habitat of a number of wildlife animal species has caused their extinction or endangered status. Among them are some species of wild cats which include the Bornean bay cat, flat-headed cat, Andean Cat, clouded leopard, marbled cat and black-footed cats to name a few. All these species of cats play an important role in the ecosystem especially in controlling the population of their prey, the most popular of which are rats. If we don’t do something now to save these animals, it might be already too late to save them.

Aside from wild cats, a significant number of house cats are also dying every year due to certain health conditions that are inherent to them. One of these conditions is worm infestation. If you are a pet owner, you ought to learn more about feline worms to save your cat from serious problems or even death.

Most Common Worms in Cats

  • Roundworms – This type of worm is perhaps the most common intestinal feline parasite. Roundworms in cats resemble a spaghetti-shape form that could grow up to four inches long. Cats can acquire this worm by nursing through an infected mother or ingesting infected rodents or infected feces of other animals.
  • Hookworms – Compared to roundworms, this type of worm is much smaller in size since they only grow up to less than an inch long. They primarily live in the small intestines and feed on blood. Hookworms pose a serious problem among infected cats as they can cause anemia especially among smaller cats. Your cat can possibly get this worm from skin contact with other infected animals including other cats and dogs.
  • Tapeworms – This long and segmented parasite can grow up to 28 inches long. Cats can get this worm by ingesting an infected host such as rodents. When present, it causes weight loss and vomiting among infected cats.
  • Lungworms – Unlike other types of worms that reside in the intestine, lungworms thrive in the lungs. Infested cats do not normally show symptoms of their presence but some cats develop persistent coughing. Cats normally get lungworms by ingesting an intermediate host such as rodents, snails and slugs.

Symptoms of Worms

Symptoms of worm infestation normally vary depending on the type of worm, but some common symptoms include:

  • Diarrhea or bloody stool
  • Visible worm in stool or near the anus
  • Potbellied abdomen or bloating
  • Weight loss
  • Vomiting
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Coughing
  • Constipation

Treatment for Worms

In case your cat shows symptoms of worms, bring that animal to a veterinarian for diagnosis and proper treatment. Treatment may vary depending on the type of worm. Although there are available over-the-counter dewormers, using them on your cat can be harmful to the animal especially if you are not sure about the type of worm that your pet has. Normally, veterinarians would recommend an oral deworming agent after a diagnosis is made.

Many cat owners are on the watch for serious health conditions in cats such as mange in cats, but take for granted possible worms in cats. Worms too can cause a serious problem among cats and it must also be given proper attention.

Common Problems Affecting the Scalp

There are many factors that can negatively affect the environment. Some of the most common are air pollution, water pollution and soil pollution among others. If left unchecked, these types of pollution can overpower nature, causing massive and irreversible destruction. The same is true with our health. If we neglect minor health problems, they can progress into serious conditions that can be more challenging to cure or treat later.

Among the easily negligible conditions that commonly affect many people are those that involve the scalp. Scalp problems can be easily neglected because they are less conspicuous than those which affect the face and other parts of the body. However, there are scalp problems that need immediate attention as they can painful, irritating and embarrassing.

Dandruff

People who have experienced having dandruff know how embarrassing it can be when those white flakes fall into their dark clothing. Dandruff is neither serious nor contagious, but it can be very annoying especially that it causes itchiness. Its common causes include dry scalp and excessive shedding of dead skin. Dandruff can be easily controlled by using dry scalp remedies such as specially formulated or medicated shampoos.

Folliculitis

Folliculitis is characterized by tiny pus-filled pimples found at the base or follicles of the hair. If it occurs in the scalp, the most common cause of the condition is bacterial attack or irritation after taking a bath in a hot tub. Some mild cases might just go away without treatment, while most cases would require an antibiotic to fight the bacteria and relieve the symptom.

Psoriasis

This skin condition may occur in any part of the body but it is more common in the scalp. For some people, the body produces excessive skin cells, leaving the excess skin cells to form crusted thick scales which can be itchy and sore. Psoriasis can be treated with ointments, steroid creams or shampoos that contain salicylic acid or tar. Severe cases may also require light therapy and injected medication.

Seborrheic Dermatitis

Aside from having dandruff, if a person also has reddening of the skin, it can be a case of seborrheic dermatitis. This skin problem is caused by excessive oils in the skin and is more common among people with psoriasis, oily hair or scalp acne. Treatment options for this condition include ointment, medicated shampoos and antifungal pills. In more serious cases, light therapy might be necessary.

Scabs on Scalp

Shingles, psoriasis, oily scalp and eczema are just some of the common causes of scalp scabs. They normally appear as lesions that are itchy, painful and irritation. They can be easily controlled if treated at their early stages. Treatment includes steroidal cortisone cream and shampoos containing tar. Virgin oil is also a known remedy for this condition.

If you have a scalp problem, don’t wait until the condition worsens. Any minor problem that is not addressed or given due attention can worsen in no time, just like what is happening to our environment. If your scalp problem persists even with over-the-counter remedies, it would be good to seek the help of your dermatologist right away.

10 Best Places to Catch Catfish

They say that a healthy body of water is evidenced by the number of marine life that thrives in it. Bodies of water which include the seas and oceans, rivers, lakes, streams, ponds and other fresh bodies of water are considered natural habitats for marine life. To preserve marine life, we also need to preserve these natural habitats.

One sign of a healthy aquatic habitat is the presence of catfish. They are present in almost all types of fresh water environment, making them popular among anglers. Catfish is a type of fish characterized by their large head and barbels around their mouth, which look more like cat’s whiskers. There is a wide range of catfish species including pictus catfish, flathead catfish and others that are caught for various purposes such as for food and as pets. If you are interested in catching catfish, here are the top five places where you can have a good catch.

1. Outside portion of river bends

One of the best places to find catfish especially flatheads is at the outside bend of a river where the river changes direction. If there are toppled trees trapped in the bend, it is a good hotspot where catfish await to find plentiful forage.

2) Wing dikes

Wing dikes are narrow formation of rocks on navigable rivers. There are normally plenty of foods here for catfishes especially on the upstream side. And these are ideal places to catch bigger catfishes.

3. River holes

Although it can be challenging to find river holes, it is definitely worth the effort as these places are considered to be big-cat magnets. Catfishes especially the flatheads, channels and blues consider these places as ideal feeding and resting places. It is important to note that during sunny days, cats can be found in deeper areas, while they move to shallow spots during night time. You should work your bait depending on the time you will be fishing.

4. Inundated small lakes and ponds

The spots where larger ponds or lakes fill are also prime locations to get a wide range of species of trophy catfish. The shallower the water, the more catfish you can find.

5. Tributary mouths

Tributary mouths of rivers or lakes are also staging areas for catfish all year round. During summer, you can find more catfish in tributaries with cool water, while during the cold months more catfish are attracted to tributaries with warm water.

6. Deep ponds

During most seasons of the year excluding summer months, catfish are abundant in deep ponds where they dig their holes and rest during daytime. Although you can catch catfishes in these places all year round, it is during winter months when you can get a bounty.

7. Bottom channels

Bottom channels serve as a highway for catfish migrating from one place to another. This makes bottom channels a good place to find trophy catfishes.

8. Mats of floating debris

During high waters, logs and other debris collect and form mats on the backwaters of reservoirs and rivers. Catfishes find these mats a good place to find baitfish and other forage, which in turn make it a good place to catch the catfishes.

9. Riprap

Ripraps are large rocks placed along shorelines for the purpose of preventing erosion. Ripraps along dams and causeways are appealing to catfishes as they consider it a good resting and feeding place.

10. Windswept shorelines

You are also more likely to have an extraordinary catch in shorelines of lakes and other aquatic bodies of water which often experience strong winds. As the wind blows, floating planktons are carried to the shore, which in turn attract a wide range of catfish species.

Fishing in these places does not automatically guarantee a good catch. It still depends on your catfish bait and fishing skills since these places require different fishing or angling techniques.