Note to the Squeamish: If things like poop and the like turn your stomach, I advise you to read no further.
On Thursday I walked Pablo as usual and, like a responsible dog owner should, when he finished his business, I picked up after him. Good thing I looked down, for there squirming among the turds was a tiny white worm. I had a haircut appointment near the vet’s, so I packed up a sample and brought it along, meaning to drop it off first. I was running late, however, so Pablo’s poop came along with me to the salon. I had sealed it in a plastic baggie, yet I kept imagining I could smell it and was self-conscious whenever the stylist was in the vicinity of my bag. Finally, I made it to the vet’s. They tested it then and there. The verdict? Tapeworms.
The assistant explained that tapeworms come from fleas. The flea-ridden dog licks its fur, ingests both flea and the tapeworm egg it carries. The egg then hatches inside the dog and takes up residence. Pablo went through a terrible bout with fleas after Thanksgiving when we traveled to NC to see relatives and returned with the pesky parasites (the fleas, not the family). According to the vet, the timing is perfect to see the tapeworms right about now. Damn those NC fleas!
Luckily, only one treatment is needed to kill the tapeworms. Pablo got his and I’m hoping that’s the last of it. I’m glad I spotted the worm when I did or we may not have known of their existence for a long time. One of the signs for tapeworms is an increased appetite. With Pablo, would we have ever noticed?