How Do Dogs Get Worms, What To Do With The Squirmy Pests?

How Do Dogs Get Worms
Photo by Sippakorn Yamkasikorn from Pexels

Worms are gross and no-one wants their dog getting them, let alone potentially leaving their eggs all-around the home and garden, Ewww!

So I’ve written this post to educate owners and explain how do dogs get worms and how to treat worms in dogs.

How Do Dogs Get Worms –
Types of worms in dogs


 Flat, white worms that are made up of tiny segments and each part is about the size of a grain of rice. 

Tapeworms survive by attaching themselves onto the walls of your dog’s gut and using their hook-like suckers, they then start to feeding and growing.


living inside the digestive system, roundworms like to feed off the intestines. They’re usually white or light brown and are usually a few inches long. (They look like spaghetti.)

If your dog has roundworms, you may notice them in his poo or vomit.


Named after their shape. They have a thicker front end body and a longer, thinner, rear end that resembles a whip.

The larger end embedding itself into the intestinal wall, causing irritation and discomfort for the dog.


Also, like living in the digestive system of your dog. Again attaching themselves to the lining of the intestinal wall.

It is here, they then start feeding on your dog’s blood.
Their eggs then pass through the digestive tract and come out through your dog’s faeces.


Is a parasitic worm called Dirofilaria immitis.
Signs of heartworm disease may include a mild persistent cough, reluctance to exercise, fatigue after moderate activity, decreased appetite, and weight loss.

As heartworm disease progresses, pets may develop heart failure and the appearance of a swollen belly due to excess fluid in the abdomen.

How do dogs get worms and how to treat worms in dogs.

Cute puppies sitting

How do dogs get Worms – Tapeworms?

Tapeworms are not directly passed from pet to pet. They require what’s called a common intermediate host.

A common intermediate host could be, for example, fleas and small rodents.
Unlike other intestinal parasites, 

Tapeworms must first pass through the intermediate host before they can infect a dog.

How do dogs get Worms Roundworms?

Roundworms – Dogs and cats become infected with roundworms by eating worm eggs from contaminated soil or stools, or by eating infected rodents.

How do dogs get worms –

Hookworms –dog may become infected when it inadvertently swallows hookworm larvae, often by grooming its feet, or from sniffing faeces or contaminated soil.

Hookworms are contracted by the ingestion of microscopic larvae by mouth or from larvae entry through the skin, usually on the feet.

How do dogs get Worms – Whipworms?

Dogs become infected with whipworms by swallowing infective whipworm eggs in soil or other substances that may contain dog faeces.

How do dogs get Worms – Heartworms

Heartworms – The worms are spread through the bite of a mosquito.

Beagle laying

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Signs of worms in dogs.

Abdominal pain



Weight loss

Poor coat appearance

Pot-bellied appearance

Signs of worms in dogs with more severe cases



Blood in stool bright red or darker purple.

Intestinal blockage

Trouble breathing and/or Pneumonia

Deficiencies in nutrition and anemia

How to treat worms in dogs and prevent my dog from having an infestation.

Preventing worms is easy and talking to your vet about the best available worming products is recommended.

Some over the counter wormers available are just not up to the same standards needed, so make sure you are buying one based on your vet’s advice.

A worming treatment once every 3 months is generally enough prevention against worms and to stop an infestation from occurring.

Dogs lined up in a row.

Can humans get worms from dogs?

We’ve gone over the signs of worms in dogs but what about humans?

Although human infection occurs infrequently, they can cause significant health issues depending on where the worms migrate to.

If you have had exposure to a pet with worms, we recommend talking to your veterinarian and your physician and discussing any potential problems with them.

Puppies Cuddling
Three little puppies sleeping close together

Frequently asked questions answered

Do dog worms look like rice?

Tapeworms do, as they are flat, white worms that are made up of tiny segments and each part, is about the size of a grain of rice.

How easy is it to get roundworms from a puppy?

Tapeworms do, as they are flat, white worms that are made up of tiny segments and each part, is about the size of a grain of rice.

How easy is it to get roundworms from a puppy?

Roundworms do pose a significant risk to humans. Contact with contaminated soil or dog faeces can result in human ingestion and infection. There is no evidence that puppies are more infections than adult dogs, however. Good hygiene and regular de-worming is good prevention.

Puppy wormer dosage?

It is best to talk with your vet about dosages, the current weight of your puppy is required to get an accurate dosage.

What to expect after de-worming a dog?

If a dog has worms expect to see the evidence in their feces.
De-worming works by killing the worms and they are then passed out via a dog’s feces.
This can last for several days until all the worms have passed.
If your dog is passing a large amount after de-worming make sure to contact your vet to see if a further treatment will be required.

Beagle running

That concludes ‘How do dogs get worms
I hope you found this helpful.
As always thank you for reading = )

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