Hookworm

Image of a hookworm under a microscope.

Hookworms are small, thread-like parasites of the small intestine where they attach and suck large amounts of blood. These parasites are found in almost all parts of the world, being common in dogs, and occasionally seen in cats.

Symptoms are usually diarrhea and weight loss. The parasites can actually suck so much blood that they cause pale gums from anemia, and black and tarry stools. Young puppies can be so severely affected that they die. Infection can be by ingestion of breast milk from an infected mother, by ingestion of infected eggs, or by skin penetration of infected larvae.

Since the adult parasites are so small, they are rarely seen in the stool. Diagnosis of these parasites is by the veterinarian or laboratory finding the microscopic eggs in the stool.

There are a variety of medications that can kill hookworms. The important point to know is that there is no one medicine that will kill all the types of intestinal parasites that exist. Some of the monthly "heartworm preventatives" will also work to treat hookworms.

People exposed to hookworms can develop a rash called cutaneous larval migrans. Infected larvae, usually from contaminated yards, can penetrate human skin and cause red tracts.

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Office Hours

Our Regular Schedule

Monday:

7:30 am-6:00 pm

Tuesday:

7:30 am-6:00 pm

Wednesday:

7:30 am-6:00 pm

Thursday:

7:30 am-6:00 pm

Friday:

7:30 am-6:00 pm

Saturday:

9:00 am-5:00 pm

Sunday:

Closed

Testimonials

Read What Our Clients Say

  • "My two cats consistently get the BEST care from the vets at Falmouth Veterinary Hospital, starting with the lovely people at check-in to the kind and caring folks upon leaving. The vets and assistants genuinely care about the health and well-being of our two kitties, and as a pet mom, I always feel reassured and happy with their care."
    Kristen B.
  • "I have been a client there for over 30 years. Care is always excellent. Would not want to ever have to go elsewhere. They are great and so loving when treating my dogs."
    Marcia M.
  • "Dr Graves goes above and beyond with our senior dog. He is caring and thoughtful and respectful. He understands that our dog is a part of our family and treats him as such. The other vets we have met have been just as great and all of the staff are friendly and helpful. We could go to closer practices, but we won’t because this crew is worth the drive."
    Emily G.