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Worm infestations in cats are one of the most common of their health issues, which can lead to some severe health complications. They can cause anemia, weight loss, gastrointestinal disturbances, unhealthy skin and coat, and other medical problems if left untreated.
It might be difficult to tell just by a look, but according to veterinarians at Cornell University, as many as 45% of cats are affected by internal parasites at any time. Prompt treatment for them is a must as they can even pass on to humans and other animals.CHECK THE TOP 15 BEST DEWORMERS FOR CATS NOW!
Fortunately, your cat can be treated for worms pretty easily with over-the-counter dewormers. The key is to select the best dewormer for cats according to your pet’s age and parasite infestation.
It is advisable to take a visit to your cat’s vet for a physical and fecal exam, which will help determine the exact worms affecting your cat. From there on, the following list will help you pick the best worm medicine for cats, effecting in removing a variety of worms.
Top 15 Best Dewormers For Cats 2020
1. Bayer Tapeword Dewormer
These are the best dewormer for cats over the age of six weeks. Bayer has been in the market for a long time, proving themselves to be quite helpful to pets and humans alike. This Tapeworm Dewormer has a formula capable of omitting the problem within 24 hours.
In case of a tapeworm infestation in your cat, the first dewormer recommended for any age or allergies is Bayer. A single dosage of it can quickly deworm cats and is quite effective in the first dosage itself.
One pack of Bayer Tapeworm dewormer includes three tablets, each with 23mg of praziquantel, the active ingredient. This ingredient starts getting to work within an hour in most cases and will leave your cat’s system along with the tapeworms by the end of the day.
The dosage instructions are to be read carefully to follow according to your cat’s physical needs. For example, only one dose of half a tablet would be enough for a cat under 4lbs to deal with a single infestation.
Cheaper solutions are usually less effective and offer a bit of a false economy. Therefore, going for this dewormer first is advisable as regardless of the high price mark, one to two tablets will remain spare for an infestation recurrence, in most cases.
- Available without prescription
- Effectively removes tapeworms
- Easily administered by mouth
- Can be crushed and mixed with food
- Safe for kittens six weeks or older
- Slightly expensive
2. Pyrantel Pamoate Suspension
Pyrantel comes in 3 variants of quantity- 2.27mg/ml, 4.45 mg/ml and 50 mg/ml suspensions. This variant, the 50 mg/ml, has pyrantel pamoate as the active ingredient and is an effective treatment majorly for pinworms but also intestinal infections such as roundworms and hookworms.
Pyrantel causes sudden muscle contractions and works by paralyzing the internal parasite, which finally passes along with the feces out from your cat’s body. Because the medicine is poorly absorbed by the gastrointestinal tract of the host, your cat is not affected by it.
Although the dosage usually ranges from 2.5 mg/lb and 5 mg/lb repeated in 2-3 weeks, the dosage should be preferably prescribed by the vet.
This dewormer is safe to use in very young kittens (2-12 weeks) and nursing cats. They rarely have any side effects.
- Treats intestinal worms like pinworms, roundworms, and hookworms
- Very little side effects
- Can also be used in very young kittens of ages 2-12 weeks
- Safe to use in nursing cats
3. Capstar Fast-Acting Oral Flea Treatment
Capstar is an orally administered capsule that tackles flea infestations and is suitable for cats of all ages alike. Each box contains six tablets, a single dose of which is enough to start killing the fleas in 30 minutes and gets the job done within an approximate period of 6 hours. It is safe to use again, one dose a day if further recurrence is noticed.
The best part of Capstar is that it is ingested orally as a tablet, which is very convenient to hide in your cat’s food or just place it in their mouth without any mess. It kills adult fleas that cause an allergy called dermatitis and is safe to use with other ongoing medications like preventatives, corticosteroids, antibiotics, or vaccines.
Most customer reviews are impressed with the effectiveness and fast-results of the capsule for the corresponding affordable price and claim to use it again.
- comes in the form of tablets
- Tackles flea infestations
- Eradicates fleas within 6 hours
- Can be used once a day with other medications
- Suitable for cats of all ages
4. Advantage II Flea Prevention
Advantage II is a convenient monthly topical that is yet another protection medicine from fleas. It is a product of the Bayer family and is recommended by veterinarians for cats weighing 2 to 5 pounds.
It comes in a tube form which is not to be ingested but applied at the back of your cat’s head. It controls existing infestation as well as prevents any further ones by breaking the flea life cycle as it kills fleas at multiple stages of growth, including eggs, larvae, and adults.
The most attractive part about this dewormer is that it is contact-based, which means your cat doesn’t have to be bit by fleas for them to die. It starts working in 12 hours and is effective for almost a month. It can be used as a monthly remedy or prevention for cat fleas round the year. Each tube of Advantage II is easy to apply, fragrance-free, and waterproof after 24 hours.
- Comes in the form of a tube
- Treats fleas at multiple life stages
- Contact based action
- Fragrance-free and waterproof
5. Hartz UltraGuard Flea
Hartz Ultra Guard is a flea treatment medicine that comes in the form of an eight-ounce spray bottle. It is again used through contact preventing the ticks from biting your cat before dying. It can be used on kittens and cats 12 weeks or older for treatment or prevention of fleas and ticks.
It gets to work very quickly, starting to show its effects within 10 minutes. It can be used weekly and even sprayed on the cat’s bedding as a preventive measure. Hartz also has an UltraGuard Plus variant, which kills and repels any re-infestation for about seven months.
- Suitable for felines over 12 weeks of age
- Comes as a spray bottle
- Fast action starting within 10 minutes
- Can be used on bedding for prevention
6. Frontline Gold
Frontline Gold is a long-lasting topical treatment effective in killing fleas, ticks, and chewing lice as soon as within 30 minutes. It has a Triple action formula to keep your cats free from pest infestation at any stage of their life cycle, adult, or eggs. The active ingredients are fipronil, (s)methoprene and pyriproxyfen packed in an easy to use applicator, which helps avoid any mess.
This dewormer maintains efficacy for an entire month, and the packet contains a dose for six months. It is safe to use on cats eight weeks or older, weighing 1.5 lbs or more, and is even waterproof. The Frontline brand name is one of the best dewormer for cats when it comes to flea and tick control.
- Treats fleas, ticks, and chewing lice
- Triple action formula kills fleas at all stages
7. Excel Liquid Roundworm De-Wormer
The active ingredient, piperazine citrate in Excel roundworm liquid works efficiently to remove roundworm infestations quickly. Liquid applications are sometimes less conspicuous and easier to use by adding a few drops into the meal than hiding a pill in their food.
It comes in a 4 fl oz bottle, which will serve for more than two doses at least. The recommended amount of dosage is a quarter teaspoon for every 2.5 lbs of body weight, two times, a fortnight apart. After that, a dose every 30 days can be used to prevent infestation. It can be used in cats six weeks and older but not nursing or pregnant cats.
- Treats roundworms effectively
- Appealing scent and taste
- Bottle holds for 2 doses
8. Drontal Broad Spectrum Dewormer
Are you looking for a deworming tablet to clear your mind for multiple infestations? Drontal Broad Spectrum dewormer by Bayer is a perfect choice. It is formulated to remove a wide variety of worms when you are not really sure about which one our cat has. The active ingredients in it are praziquantel and pyrantel that are both powerful and quick in action.
This variant of Drontal has 50 pills, which can be profitable for owners with multiple cats. It has an approximate shelf life of two years from the purchase date and is suitable for cats and kittens weighing two to sixteen pounds.
Though Drontal may be high up in the race of best dewormer for cats, the only con to it is the high price point. Nevertheless, it has quite a high customer rating, an Amazon’s Choice award, and is highly preferred by cat owners and vets.
- Broad-spectrum dewormer
- Treats roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms
- Can be used in kittens one month or older
- Slightly expensive
9. CapAction Oral Flea Treatment
CapAction Oral Flea Treatment is an orally administered tablet which has nitenpyram as the primary active ingredient. It can effectively eradicate fleas in cats weighing 2 – 25 lbs. It starts working within 30 minutes of ingestion and removes adult fleas in about 6 hours. In the case of re-infestation, it is safe to use again, one dose daily.
- Tablets to be administered orally
- Removes fleas fast
- Can be used once daily
10. Durvet WormEze Liquid
Durvet WormEze Liquid Canine & Feline Anthelmintic is a liquid dewormer safe for kittens and puppies over six weeks of age. Piperazine Citrate is the active ingredient in the medicine and is useful in removing large roundworms from their intestines. The liquid can be mixed with the cat’s drinking water or any meal, as it has a very palatable taste.
The dosage is 5 ml per 5 pounds of body weight. The treatment can be repeated within 10 days again to ensure complete erasure of the worms. It is very affordable and is an excellent bargain for owners of both dogs and cats.
- Removes roundworms
- Easy to administer
- Suitable for kittens 6 weeks or older
- Good taste
11. PetArmor Sure Shot Liquid Wormer
PetArmor is again a liquid medicine for the removal of three strains of roundworms in cats over the age of 6 weeks. The active ingredient is Piperazine, and it comes with an easy to use dosing cap for a convenient treatment dosage. The best thing about this dewormer is the fish flavor that makes it very easy to administer to the cats without having to hide it in their food.
- Treats three strains of roundworms
- Easy to administer
- Tasty fish flavor
- Suitable for kittens over 6 weeks of age
12. PEAK Marketing Pet Wormer Gel
The Peak Marketing Gel is an affordable medicine to ward off parasites and worms with the active ingredient piper zine. It can be mixed in the cat food or even applied directly into their mouths because it caters immensely to their taste buds.
It comes in a 6.4-ounce tube, which is very easy to use and is preferred by many cat owners. The advised dosage is one teaspoonful or 5 ml per 5 lbs of body weight in cats or dogs who are six weeks or older. This dosage should be repeated in 10 days after the first one for complete eradication of the worms.
- Removes roundworms
- Easy to use
- Can be repeated in 10 days
- Appealing taste
13. Cheristin Topical Flea Prevention
Cheristin is a flea killing and preventive medicine with the active ingredient as spinetoram. It has a non-greasy and quick-drying formula that can be administered through a small applicator with a rounded tip. It is suitable for cats over the age of 8 weeks and a weight of 1.8 lbs. The solution starts acting as fast as within 30 minutes, killing all the fleas in approximately 12 hours.
A single dose of Cheristin lasts long, preventing fleas for up to 6 weeks and can be used monthly. For all the environmentally-conscious pet owners, it has the advantage of being eco-friendly. Spinetoram, the active ingredient, received a 2008 Presidential GreenChemistry award for low harmful impacts on the environment and the agricultural industry.
- Eco-friendly active ingredient
- Easy applicator
- Can be administered to cats over 8 weeks of age
14. Solimo Amazon Brand Flea And Tick Topical Treatment
Solimo is the Amazon Brand who have come up with their new Flea and Tick Topical treatment for cats. It is capable of killing fleas at all life stages, ticks, chewing lice, and Lyme disease-causing deer ticks for up to a month after application. The active ingredients it constitutes of are fipronil and (s)-methoprene.
The packet consists of three doses of 0.017 fluid ounce tubes, which can be used once a month, though the effects last for up to 6 weeks from the application time. It is not to be orally administered but externally applied to the back of your cat’s neck. Solimo is waterproof and is therefore effective after baths, water immersions, or exposure to sunlight.
- The effective killing of fleas at all growth stages
- Lasts up to 6 weeks
- Can be used once a month
15. Misona Cat Collar
Misona cat collar, unlike other liquid, tablet, and gel dewormers, is a flea prevention and removal collar. It is much easier to use as you just have to put it around your cat’s collar and forget about it.
The collar is fully adjustable for any size. You can tighten it as much as required and then cut off the excessive belt. It is also entirely waterproof for usage while bathing or swimming and can even be washed if it gets dirty.
According to the customer reviews, it is highly effective even though it is all-natural. It is made of a proprietary blend of essential oils made from natural ingredients and doesn’t cause any side effects or allergies. It works effectively for as long as eight months and is one of the best dewormer for cats in the market.
Even though it is slightly expensive if you are not satisfied with the product Misona offers a free replacement for the collar. This saves you the need to keep buying drops and shampoos every month and rest assured knowing the fleas will stay off your feline friends.
- Convenient adjustable collar form
- All-natural ingredients in essential oils
- Effective tick protection
- Works for up to 8 months
Factors To Consider While Buying
Selecting the correct dewormer for your cat can sometimes be quite confusing with the wide variety of products available in the market. Here are a few important features to look out for when choosing the best cat dewormer for your felines.
Safety always comes first. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to pick the medicine according to your cat’s/ kitten’s age and weight. For people who prefer all-natural solutions, many deworming products available are natural too. If your cat is pregnant or nursing, some dewormers might not be suitable for them also.
Some products are more effective than the other, which is usually determined by the ingredients listed on the pack of the medicine. You could ask your vet for advice on which ingredients work better. Moreover, not every dewormer is fit for every type of worm infestation.
3. Ease Of Usage
Deworming medicines come in tablet, liquid, and spray formulations. Each of them has its own benefits and shortcomings, and it is up to you to decide which one will be easier in your cat’s case. If the dewormer is orally administered, the taste of the medicine should be considered as it might put your cat off.
Best Brands To Consider While Choosing A Dewormer
Some brands are age-old and have established a name in the pharmaceutical market. When it comes to choosing the best dewormer for cats, Bayer is usually the first name that pops up online. It is a German multinational life science and pharmaceutical company founded in 1863 in Barmen.
It started as a dyestuff factory, and its first product was the well-known aspirin. They also introduced the first widely used antibiotic- phenobarbital. These are just an introduction to the countless work they have done in medicine.
When it comes to pet care too, Bayer has a wide variety of products to choose from. Starting with health supplements to dewormers and flea products, they have very impressive customer reviews.
2. Frontline Plus
Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health is a multinational animal health company that started in 2017. They formed when Boehringer Ingelheim acquired Merial and merged it with Boehringer Ingelheim’s existing animal health assets and changed their name to the current one.
They produce a lot of products and vaccines for farm animals, wildlife, and domestic pets. With a presence in about 150 countries around the world, their most popular products include Heartgard, NexGard, Ivomec, PureVax, and Frontline. Frontline Plus is the flea and tick removal medicine that is widely used for dogs and cats.
Amazon offers many store brands. There is a separate category labeled ‘Our Brands’ that offers Amazon’s in-house brands Amazon Fresh, Amazon Basics, Solimo, and more. Solimo is their private label that offers everyday goods like health and personal care, household supplies, vitamins, supplements, and pet care products.
They take pride in delivering quality products at affordable prices and a refund guarantee if you are not satisfied. Their pet products vary from dog treats to flea and tick solution for cats. Although they are a new name, their customer reviews are well above average.
A few other names in chemical dewormers that are recommended by the vets are Excel, HomeoPet, and Pyrintal. However, there are a lot of other up and coming brands that are making their own cat dewormers that have been getting equally positive reviews by pet owners.
Types Of Worm Infestations
Regardless of whether your cat spends more time indoors or outdoors, parasites are quite common in cats throughout the world. The right medication can only be selected once you determine the type of worm. Here are a few most common types of worm infestations among cats.
Roundworms are pretty common in cats and are usually acquired by eating roundworm eggs. It is important to catch and treat them as soon as possible.
How To Know If Your Cat Has Them?
Roundworm infestation has signs like a loss of appetite, bloated stomach, and general weakness.
Hookworm can be a pretty dangerous parasite and is spread by ingesting the eggs or walking on hookworm-contaminated soil. It is also shed through feces and can be gotten by cats if they share a litter box. They have to be diagnosed by a veterinarian because they are not visible to the naked eye.
How To Know If Your Cat Has Them?
To begin with, your cat might get lesions on the bottom of their feet. Cough, constipation, diarrhea, or a loss of appetite can also be noticed. Quick treatment should be administered as hookworms can be fatal.
Tapeworm infestations are usually gotten through fleas carrying tapeworm eggs, which latch on to your cat’s intestines, once inside. They rob your cat of the nutrients it needs making them weak and sickly. They can easily be acquired if you have a lot of fleas in your home.
How To Know If Your Cat Has Them?
Segments of the worm can be seen in the cat’s feces. A loss of appetite and diarrhea can also be noticed.
These are worms looking like whips with long, slender front and stubby, thick back like a whip and its handle, respectively. Trichuris Serreta is the most common whipworm affecting cats. They can be transmitted through the ingestion of water or food contaminated by the parasite eggs.
Whipworms find their way into your cat’s intestines where they grow, mature, lay eggs, which then hatch to start another life cycle.
How To Know If Your Cat Has Them?
Whipworms can be tested for by stool tests. Their symptoms include dehydration, diarrhea, weight loss, and blood in stool in some rare cases.
These are just the initial symptoms and causes of a few worms. It is strongly advisable to take your cat to the vet for a correct diagnosis, detailed knowledge of worms, and the right medication for it.
Treatment options available for deworming can be chemical or all-natural. Chemical treatments are either over the counter medicines or prescription based. The best over the counter cat dewormers work as good as prescription based ones.
The chemical medicines you choose depends on the type of worm to be treated. Most of them have the following chemicals as their active ingredient:
- Piperazine- Paralyzes roundworms to allow them to pass through the cat’s body easily.
- Pyrantel pamoate- Effective against both roundworms and hookworms; Also works by paralyzing their bodies.
- Praziquantel- Helpful in treating tapeworms by starving them till the point when they disintegrate.
If you prefer natural alternatives, Diatomaceous earth is the most common option. It works by dehydrating the worms and is used to treat fleas. Though Diatomaceous earth is subject to the debate concerning its effectiveness – natural treatment sounds more attractive but is usually less effective.
As mentioned before, any kind of treatment should be checked for safety first. The side effects of the medicine must be kept in mind. Any special cases in cats like sickness or older age or pregnancy must be taken seriously- consult the vet before administering any over the counter drugs.
Any treatment will only work successfully if your cat consumes the medicine. If it is not an externally applied dewormer, it might be best to go for tastier options or something which can be well concealed in the cat’s meal. A pill gun might also be a good investment.
It isn’t uncommon for cats to have a worm infestation without showing any outward symptoms whatsoever. This makes visits to the vet and preventive measures very crucial for every cat. Here are some of the most common and effective methods of prevention:
- Stay clean- This goes without saying. Maintaining a clean living space for your cat is important for a variety of reasons. Cleanliness for a cat includes fresh drinking water, bowls washed daily and litter box cleaned regularly.
- Keep them healthy- A good diet can help build a strong immunity in your cat to fight off parasites. Feeding high-quality food, vitamins, and supplements can help in the same.
- Use flea prevention- An elongated presence of fleas on your cat will cause unavoidable tapeworms. Therefore a preventive flea treatment is not just protection against fleas but also worms.
- Try to keep them indoors- Birds, rabbits, and rodents are all carriers of worms. Although it isn’t practically possible to keep them inside all the time, the indoors are much more hygienic, so you should try to keep them away from dirty outdoor areas.
- Examine their feces- If your cat spends most of its time outside, taking a stool sample once in a while to the vet would be an excellent way to catch parasites without symptoms.
Best Dewormers For Cat – Conclusion
An important part of keeping your cat happy and healthy is making sure they are worm-free. Some worms are bad enough to even spread to humans giving more reason to take preventive steps and proper treatment when required.
It’s not just the prescription based dewormers that are effective. There are several over the counter remedies that work equally well. Although, they require a little extra research and examination or the type of worm infestation.
However, it does not harm to consult your vet to double-check the treatment you are going for.
FAQs on Dewormers For Cat
Q1. What Is A Cat Dewormer, And How Does It Work?
Dewormers are medications- orally ingested or externally applied, used to control and treat intestinal parasites like tapeworms, roundworms, and hookworms in cats. The majority of the worm parasites target parts of the stomach and attack the intestinal tract.
They usually work by either paralyzing or dissolving the parasitic worm making it come out with the cat’s feces. Complete removal of a worm infestation involves multiple treatments because some dewormers don’t eradicate larvae. Therefore subsequent treatments help kill the larvae when they have matured into adults.
Q2. What Are The Signs To Know If Your Cat Is Infested With Worms?
The symptoms differ in every kind of parasitic worm, but some can be common to most of the infestations. If any of the following symptoms are visible in your cat, take them for a visit to the vet to know the exact problem and remedy.
Bloating/ round abdomen
Visible worms in stool
Visible worms near the anus
Q3. When To Deworm A Cat?
New-born kittens or newly adopted cats must be dewormed beginning at the age of 6 weeks. This is a standard procedure that every new cat owner must carry out whether their cats show any symptoms of infestation or not.
The deworming process must be carried out every two weeks, starting from the age of 6 weeks for at least three more months in kittens. After that, they should be dewormed until they are six months old. Similarly, adopted kittens or cats have to be dewormed immediately, continuing the procedure every two weeks.
Q4. How Frequently Should A Cat Be Dewormed?
Studies show that after a deworming procedure, cats usually re-contract worms within a brief period of time, which is approximately three months or more. The parasitic worms grow in quantity by reproducing, which can cause serious health problems. This is the reason you should deworm your cats almost every three months.
If your feline friend likes to hunt rodents, they might be exposed to worms regularly. In such cases, veterinarians advise deworming your cat every couple of months.
Q5. How Long Does It Take For A Dewormer To Work?
The time depends entirely on the kind of deworming medicine you are using. Some of the dewormers start working within as soon as 10 minutes, while others take a day or two of reaction time to really work on the pesky parasites.
Usually, dewormers eliminate most adult parasites after a day of administration and further require a second dosage in 3-4 weeks to flush out the larvae that will have matured.
Q6. Is A Dewormer Overdose Possible In Cats?
Too much of anything is unhealthy, and so can be the Too much of anything is unhealthy, and so can be the case even with the best dewormer for cats. It is a slippery slope to hazard, depending on the type of medicine used.
Considering the dosage according to the weight of your cat is very important. It is also very possible to be miscalculated.
Administering an amount more than required can cause adverse effects, mainly indicated by extreme diarrhea, vomiting, and even cramping.
Pam is a self-confessed cat lover and has experience of working with cats and owning cats for as long as she can remember. This website is where she gets to share her knowledge and interact with other cat lovers.