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Are Indoor Cats Safe From Parasites?

ImageSpring has sprung….and so have the pesky parasites! We all know the potential for our pets to pick up parasites outdoors….but what about the cat that stays indoors? Allentown Animal Clinic warns those pets are at risk too!

Many pet owners believe that keeping their pets indoors eliminates the risk of parasite infestation/infection. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Indoors, fleas are never exposed to freezing temperatures, which means they can live and breed indefinitely. Even outdoors, given the right circumstances, fleas can remain active during the winter months. Fleas can hitch a ride on a human or the family dog and easily find a home on your indoor cats. Cats, being fastidious groomers, easily remove any signs of a flea infestation from their coat, leaving unsuspecting owners unaware of a problem.

Tapeworms can also be a problem for indoor cats. Tapeworms are carried by fleas and can easily be ingested while your cat grooms.

Roundworms are another parasite that can often infect an indoor-only cat. Mice can enter even the most well-maintained home. Mice can be infected with fleas and roundworm. Cats being natural predators will often hunt the rodents. When your cat bites or ingests his prey, he can also be ingesting parasites.

Heartworm prevention is also a must for even indoor cats. In most areas of the country, mosquitoes carry heartworm larva. We all know that it’s not uncommon for a mosquito to enter the home. All it takes is one bite from an infected mosquito to transmit heartworm! Heartworm disease can cause asthma-like symptoms, and can be potentially fatal, causing heart and lung disease.

Clearly, our indoor cats are not even safe from these pesky parasites. The good news is that they can be protected too!

We recommend using a safe and effective flea preventative year round to prevent flea infestations. Take your cat in for regular veterinary check ups and tests to rule out any current parasite problem. Your veterinarian can even dispense a prescription Heartworm preventative to protect your cat. Talk to you veterinarian about the parasite risks for your indoor cat and the best way to keep your cat safe and protected.


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