This past week has been a trying one; aside from general teenage dog angst, Etta managed to pick up tape worms! Generally this happens when a dog or cat ingests an infected flea, eats rodents, lizards or even rabbit excrement. Etta does not have fleas and I have not caught her eating mice or geckos so I am not sure where it came from. I do know that we have wild rabbits on our property so perhaps they had something to do with it. I first got a hunch that she might have worms when I noticed that she was eating more than normal. My suspicions were confirmed when I caught sight of a worm while I was stooping and scooping. I called my vet and described what I saw; a small white thing that looked like a grain of rice. The “grain of rice” is a segment of a larger worm that passes out when the dog defecates. I got Etta some Wrm Clear from Homeopet and that seems to have done the trick, as she is now back to eating normally and there have been no other worm sightings.
I did a little research into preventatives for tapeworms and I am going to try adding some ground pumpkin seeds and wheat germ oil to her food. Both of these make the intestinal track inhospitable to the worms. I have also begun giving her Brewer’s Yeast and Garlic to help boost her immune and digestive systems. A good option is Earth Animal’s Internal Powder. We carry this in tab form, which is tasty and can be given as a treat.
The cherry on top of this latest week of tribulations was when I woke up to cat puke on the carpet (the only carpet the animals have access to). Before I could catch her, Etta ran in and gobbled it down! Ewwww! Just when I had finished cleaning it up I heard heaving. There goes Etta puking on the same carpet! Argh. I took a deep breath and tried to be Zen about it. Deeeeeep Breath.
Thank goodness these creatures we choose to have in our lives are so darn cute! When they are more work than play I sometimes wonder why I am taking all of this on. But then, when they come over and snuggle into your side when you are feeling down or do something hilariously silly to make you laugh you are reminded how valuable they are. They make us smile and remind us to take time out and just live in the moment and not sweat the small stuff…like barf on the carpet!