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OTC meds for Tapeworm

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Has anyone used an over-the-counter treatment for kitty tapeworm? Which kind, and how successful was it? Also, I've heard that tapeworm indicates the presence of fleas, although I have never seen a single flea on this cat. Should I treat for fleas anyway, and what should I use to get rid of them?
post #2 of 28
I do not reccomend OTC dewormers of any kind (or flea treatments). There have been many cases where they have made the cat very ill, & even killed them. Please go to your vet if you suspect tapeworms - it's much safer that way.
post #3 of 28
I would not use otc worm or flea treament.
My friend lost a pet that way.
post #4 of 28
call your vet - mine didn't charge me for a visit, but needed to weight them to give the medicine... It was $13.00 for Lucky, which is a 11lb kitty... It turned out to be cheaper than otc. It is pretty easy to see if they have tapeworms, as little "sesame seed" looking thingies will be stuck to the fur around their butts... Also, it is the other way around: fleas can be an indicator of tapeworms - so yes, you should treat them for fleas also..
post #5 of 28
I don't recommend OTC tapeworm meds. You can buy a bottle of three crushable pills, but it's very difficult to get your cat to take them. Even though you have to pay the vet fee, I would recommend saving yourself a headache and getting your cat an injection. The medicine itself costs about the same as the OTC stuff.
post #6 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissKalamata View Post
Has anyone used an over-the-counter treatment for kitty tapeworm? Which kind, and how successful was it? Also, I've heard that tapeworm indicates the presence of fleas, although I have never seen a single flea on this cat. Should I treat for fleas anyway, and what should I use to get rid of them?
Yes, I believe it was called Cross winds or something or other. IIRC, got it from Pet Smart (~$20 for 3/4 pills). It needs to contain Praziquantel an anthelmintic for Cestodes. My cat eliminated the worm in about 48 hrs. Dosing rates and dosage overall should NOT been taken lightly.

Yep, it's part of the life cycle of the flea. The cat ingests the flea.

Probably shouldn't treat yourself. I'm in the medical field and had a complete understanding of what I was getting into. I didn't see the point of paying a significant amount for the same diagnosis and then being prescribed a commercial drug containing Praziquantel. This is just me, your best bet is to contact the vet. as others have suggested.

Oh yeah, don't use any of that Hartz crap. It does not contain Praziquantel.
post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Devanagara View Post
Even though you have to pay the vet fee, I would recommend saving yourself a headache and getting your cat an injection.
So the vet would give the cat a shot instead of a pill?
post #8 of 28
My cats have had the shot before but it cost alot more then the pills.
It works well though.
The pills I get from the vet also.
I would never use otc stuff.
post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for the answers!

How expensive would you expect the shot to be, then? And in general, how much would you expect a veterinary check-up to cost for multiple cats (this vet actually comes to your house)? I'm not used to dealing with vet visits myself (and don't have much money).
post #10 of 28
My vet charged $43 for the shot, but because of the circumstances it was worth it. Harley does not like his mouth messed with and Jack was horribly sick that day and didn't need the added stress of a pilling.

Leslie
post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 
I wrote the original post many months ago when I was much much less knowledgeable about feline health...this forum has helped a lot with curbing my ignorance! I am very glad everyone here talked me out of the OTC meds. Thanks!

So....this cat has been getting tapeworms every 2-4 months. He gets treated with Profender each time, at about $14 a dose. I'm just wondering whether this is the safest, most-cost effective way to do it. What other quality dewormers are out there - I hear Revolution mentioned a lot, any others? How safe are they in terms of repeated, regular usage, and how much do they cost? I just want to know my options.

As far as I can tell, the cat does not have fleas. He does go outside.
post #12 of 28
Revolution does not treat tapeworm, however it DOES prevents fleas, and that is how he is getting it. It takes him eating ONE flea to get it. So if he must go outside... IMHO, he should be treated again for tapes with Profender or Drontal (I take he is hard to pill, that is why you are giving Profender?), and be kept on revolution or other flea treatment monthly. I like revolution because it also prevents heartworm disease. Frontline is also readily available.
Please keep him on a flea meds monthly if he goes outside.... it is too much for him to be dewormed every couple of months
post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 
Oh...for some reason, I thought Revolution killed parasites along with fleas. I must have confused it with something else.

So, are Profender and Drontal the only decent dewormers? (You seemed to imply that Drontal is preferable to Profender?) Are there any products that prevent worms in the first place?

Actually, I don't think he's getting the worms from fleas. I think he gets them from catching prey, and using Frontline or Revolution is not going to stop him from catching prey.
post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissKalamata View Post
Oh...for some reason, I thought Revolution killed parasites along with fleas. I must have confused it with something else.

So, are Profender and Drontal the only decent dewormers? (You seemed to imply that Drontal is preferable to Profender?) Are there any products that prevent worms in the first place?

Actually, I don't think he's getting the worms from fleas. I think he gets them from catching prey, and using Frontline or Revolution is not going to stop him from catching prey.
Revolution does kill SOME parasites but NOT tapeworms. Tapeworms come from fleas. So yes, it is extremely likely he is eating fleas... And if he is outside, chances are that this statement is true, specially if he is not being de-flead. IMO Drontal and Profender are the best ones, but there could be others - but these are the ones that kill tapeworms plus the other common parasites.
There are other products, like strongid, but it doesn't kill tapeworms. You want to stick with Drontal or Profender. The reason why I like drontal better is because, since it is a pill, you are sure the cat will get the complete dosage... It seems to have better feedback out there...But they do essentially the same thing.
If you want to save $$$, the best thing to do, if you can, is to keep your kitty inside... This way all these problems would essentially disappear
post #15 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by carolinalima View Post
So yes, it is extremely likely he is eating fleas... And if he is outside, chances are that this statement is true, specially if he is not being de-flead.
Fleas can survive a long time away from a host, right? So he could be eating a piece of grass that happens to have a flea on it, or he could catch a mouse that has fleas. What I'm trying to get at is that he could eat a flea that isn't even on him. A flea drug like Frontline or Revolution would keep the fleas off him, but it wouldn't keep the fleas off the grass in the yard. So it doesn't seem like a flea medication would really prevent him from eating fleas and getting tapeworms.

Is Drontal emodepside and praziquantel (like Profender)? Does it kill other kinds of worms?

Quote:
Originally Posted by carolinalima
the best thing to do, if you can, is to keep your kitty inside...
Key word if.
post #16 of 28
Quote:
Fleas can survive a long time away from a host, right? So he could be eating a piece of grass that happens to have a flea on it, or he could catch a mouse that has fleas. What I'm trying to get at is that he could eat a flea that isn't even on him. A flea drug like Frontline or Revolution would keep the fleas off him, but it wouldn't keep the fleas off the grass in the yard. So it doesn't seem like a flea medication would really prevent him from eating fleas and getting tapeworms.
Yeah, but it is much easier for him to eat a flea by scratching himself when it itches from a flea bite... Question - if there is fleas in the grass, what makes you think your cat won't catch it?

Quote:
Is Drontal emodepside and praziquantel (like Profender)? Does it kill other kinds of worms?
Drontal is praziquantel/pyrantel pamoate and yes, it is broad spectrum, killing Tapeworms, hookworms and roundworms, like profender.


Quote:
Key word if.
post #17 of 28
I gather that your cat is an indoor/outdoor cat so basically as long as he is going outdoors you are going to have tapeworm issues. You will need to talk to a vet about deworming him on a regular basis. There is no medication that will prevent him swallowing a flea which results in tapeworm.
post #18 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by carolinalima View Post
Question - if there is fleas in the grass, what makes you think your cat won't catch it?
Very good point...we've never seen fleas on this cat, though, not to say that he couldn't get them. I guess it is one of those "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" situations. If we found fleas on him, he and the other cats would be treated.
post #19 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissKalamata View Post
Very good point...we've never seen fleas on this cat, though, not to say that he couldn't get them. I guess it is one of those "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" situations. If we found fleas on him, he and the other cats would be treated.
But what we are all trying to say is that if the cat is getting tapeworms over and over again, then he is indeed ingesting fleas so even if you have not actually found them on him, he is getting them and swallowing them. You also say that you have other cats. I would venture to say that you have fleas in your house if all the cats are going out. Fleas do not LIVE on animals, they just hop on for a meal and then hop off into the carpet and furniture.
post #20 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
But what we are all trying to say is that if the cat is getting tapeworms over and over again, then he is indeed ingesting fleas so even if you have not actually found them on him, he is getting them and swallowing them.
I understand that. I'm just saying that flea meds won't necessarily prevent the cat from getting tapeworms. They might decrease his chances of getting the tapes, but there's no guarantee. For that reason, I hesitate to put him on a Revolution-type drug. I would rather not medicate the cats unnecessarily, especially when there's no guarantee he will stay free of tapeworms.

I do agree that the cat needs to be dewormed regularly.
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissKalamata View Post
I understand that. I'm just saying that flea meds won't necessarily prevent the cat from getting tapeworms. They might decrease his chances of getting the tapes, but there's no guarantee. For that reason, I hesitate to put him on a Revolution-type drug. I would rather not medicate the cats unnecessarily, especially when there's no guarantee he will stay free of tapeworms.

I do agree that the cat needs to be dewormed regularly.
Ok - you might be doing worst though by dewormig so frequently... #1. and #2, there are other reasons to use revolution, like to prevent heartworm disease... #3... it might not guarantee, but it reduces the chances dramatically, like anything in life...
In the end, the choice is yours, but IMHO an outside cat should be in protected against fleas first, then dewormed as needed. You are really doing the process backwards.
post #22 of 28
We use milbemax (Milbemycin Oxime, Praziquantel) to treat tapeworms. I certainly wouldnt be using OTC meds and would speak to the vet about a program for your cat, both deworming (it will take several doses weeks apart to get rid of all of the different stages of the tapeworms as dewormers only kill adult parasites and not the juvenile or egg forms so when they grow they also have to be dewormed until all stages are gone) and then flea treatments even if you are not seeing signs of fleas.

You will also have to clean all areas where fleas could be contacting your cat as parasites and their eggs can live for years in the right conditions (they even cryogenically froze parasite eggs and then when they warmed them up they were active again)
post #23 of 28
When I first got Neko, her stool sample results came back positive for tapeworms. They perscribed her Advantage Multi. The pakaging doesn't say anything about tapeworms! I asked someone at petco about it and they told me Advantage Multi does not get rid of tapeworms. So... my friend called her sister, who is a vet tech, and asked her what they do at their clinic... They also give Advantage Multi! So why do vets perscribe this medicine when it is not to rid the TW? I know it prevents fleas and internal parasites....???? Three months later... could Neko still have tapeworms? She is given Advantage Multi monthly.
post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by silva_unt View Post
When I first got Neko, her stool sample results came back positive for tapeworms. They perscribed her Advantage Multi. The pakaging doesn't say anything about tapeworms! I asked someone at petco about it and they told me Advantage Multi does not get rid of tapeworms. So... my friend called her sister, who is a vet tech, and asked her what they do at their clinic... They also give Advantage Multi! So why do vets perscribe this medicine when it is not to rid the TW? I know it prevents fleas and internal parasites....???? Three months later... could Neko still have tapeworms? She is given Advantage Multi monthly.
Yes, Advantage Multi does not get rid of Tapeworm, it does get rid of fleas, earmites, and other parasites, like hookworms and roundworms and prevents heartworm disease... but NOT tapeworms. It is very complete, like Revolution... great stuff, but if your cat had tape, it needs something else.
post #25 of 28
My vet recommends cats who go outside (not mine) be dosed with drontal every three months, in addition to a topical flea treatment such as frontline plus or revolution.
post #26 of 28
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone for the answers. Guess I'm still an ignoramus regarding feline health.

I will see about flea prevention...but if all three cats need to be treated...that's what? over $1000 a year?? for fleas that may or may not be present on the cats. Local store sells Frontline at $50 for what I believe is a 1 month supply (I may be mistaken, maybe it's 3 months). Crazy! Factor in the Feliway the other cat needs, and there won't be enough money left over for cat food and litter!

So it is safer to give flea drugs monthly (assuming that takes care of the tapeworms) than to give dewormer 4 times a year?

I'll see what my vet has to say about flea prevention and worms...
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by icklemiss21 View Post
We use milbemax
Milbemax is quite popular over here as it's a small tablet and easy to give. All wormers are OTC over here, we just recommend people stay away from supermarket ones and stick with Profender, Drontol etc. the name brands.
post #28 of 28
Flea drugs are meant to be used monthly, you can buy them in packs of 12 from the vet for that purpose. Check with your vet for costs as the Petstore one dosages tend to be very overpriced compared to the year pack.

Even if you treat for fleas, you will still need to do a 2 - 3 step process to get rid of the tapeworms. Your vet can tell you how far apart the dewormer needs to be given to be effective based on the worm load (they will ask you to bring in a fecal sample)

Advantage offer a rebate too http://advantage.petparents.com//spe...rs.cfm?adType=
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