Keeping a regular deworming schedule for your dog is one of the most important things you can do for his or her health – and a very easy thing to do as well. If your dog has a known worm infestation right now, immediate worm control is required. After that, a worming program that uses a quality, proven dewormer product will ensure that your dog doesn’t fall prey to intestinal parasites which are not only extremely uncomfortable – but can also be a great risk to your dog’s health.
Deciding on the right worming product for your dog(s) is the first step. It can seem daunting, as there are dozens of products available. That’s why I’ve put together this guide, comparison and review of the best dewormers you can get off the shelf and start using straight away to protect your pet.
|Bayer Tapeworm Dewormer
|Excel Safe-Guard 4
|Durvet Triple Wormer
|Panacur C Dewormer
|Bayer Quad Dewormer
|Sentry HC Worm X Plus
|Nemex 2 Liquid Wormer
Bayer Tapeworm Dewormer Review
As the name suggests, this is for treating tapeworms only. If you know your dog has a tapeworm infestation specifically, you’ll want something that targets that worm and gets it out of the system fast. Tapeworm can only be detected in the dog’s faeces so you need to be vigilant in checking if you suspect your pet is suffering from tapeworm, such as noticing symptoms like unexplained weight loss and of course, noticing fleas around.
Note that it works for both types of dog tapeworms: Dipylidium caninum and Taenia pisiformis. When given in the right dose, it starts actively working right away and you will notice tapeworms being expelled (not a pretty sight, but certainly a very relieving one for your dog and you).
Most people see the elimination of all tapeworms from the dog within 48 hours when using this dewormer. To keep them away, you’ll also need to control the fleas that play transport host to tapeworms. A flea control collar is one option, but you’ll also need to treat the environment and dog bedding.
Active ingredient: Praziquantel 34mg
Quickly clearing up a tapeworm infestation in puppies and adult dogs. Especially if you can’t get to a vet right away.
Check the price on the Bayer Tapeworm Dewormer dog tablets
Excel Safe-Guard 4 Canine Dewormer
SafeGuard4 treats all the most common types of roundworms, tapeworms, hookworms and whipworms.
The large dog version (4 gram) is limited to dogs up to 40 pounds in weight. This doesn’t mean you can’t use the Excel wormer for larger dogs though; you just have to combine multiple products to get to the right dosage. Some people are fine with doing this, others find it a hassle and choose to use another dewormer that caters to heavier dogs with just one product.
To get the right dosage of Excel Safe-Guard 4 for your dog’s weight, see the following table:
||Excel SafeGuard Product
Excel dewormer takes the form of small granules which are added to your dog’s food. Again, this will be favorable for some people and dogs, while others will prefer chewable tablets or a liquid wormer. Once your dog has ingested the right amount of Safe Guard for a period of 3 days, the protection will last for about 6 months.
- 6 month protection from worms
- Easy to add to dog’s meals
- Dogs larger than 40lbs need multiple combination of products
Durvet Triple Wormer
Treats: Tapeworm (2 types), Hookworm (3 types) and Roundworm (2 types)
Active ingredients: praziquantel 30mg, pyrantel pamoate 30mg.
This is an all in one wormer that targets the seven most common intestinal worms. It’s a chewable tablet so can be given to your dog like any treat. It’s created to be palatable and tasty, so most dogs will take to it just fine.
The dosage (listed on the back of the box) depends on your dog’s weight.
There’s one product for puppies and small dogs (6 pounds to 25 pounds), and one for medium to large dogs which takes in everything from 25 pound dogs up to the largest dogs at 200 pounds.
If you have a small dog, choose the 30mg Puppy/Small dog version of Durvet rather than trying to give a half dosage of the Medium/Large version, which is not recommended.
|Your dog’s weight
||Which Durvet Wormer to Use?
|6 pounds to 25 pounds
||Puppy & Small Dogs
|25 pounds and above
Panacur C Canine Dewormer
Effective for: Roundworms, Whipworms, Tapeworms (only the most common Taenia pisiformis tapeworm type) and Hookworms.
Active ingredient: Fenbendazole
Panacur C has a low reported rate of side effects. One clinical study found that around 1% of 240 dogs in the study experienced vomiting.
Using Panacur C for treating worms in puppies: this dewormer is safe to use for puppies that are at least 6 weeks old. It’s also safe for pregnant dogs.
Dosage of Panacur C
Knowing your dog’s approximate weight (rounded to the highest 10 pounds) is how you calculate the right dose of this wormer. Below is a table of the daily dosage which needs to be given to your dog for 3 days in a row.
Because Panacur C comes in three different sizes (1, 2 and 4 grams), you simply need to figure out your dog’s weight and required 3-day dose before ordering.
||2 gram + 1 gram
||4 gram + 1 gram
||4 gram + 2 gram
||4 gram x2+ 4 gram
|Above 80 pounds
||Combine the dose of two smaller weights to equal your dog’s weight (e.g. 50lbs + 50lbs for a 100lbs dog)
How should you give this wormer to your dog?
Mixing it in with food is the recommended method. Wet food is preferable, and only a small amount of food should be used so that your dog ingests the entire dose. This needs to be done for three consecutive days, whcih makes up the entire dosage of Panacur C for your dog’s weight. Each box of Panacur contains three doses.
Check the current price on the right Panacur Canine Dewormer for your dog
Bayer Quad Dewormer Review
The Quad Dewormer from Bayer takes care of the 4 main worm types: tapeworms, hookworms, roundworms and whipworms.
It is a chewable tablet, a big plus for people who aren’t comfortable with putting a regular tablet down the throat of a dog (or hiding it in the food and worrying it won’t be eaten).
Chewable tabs are made to be palatable and the majority of dogs will take it without even noticing that it’s any different to a normal treat.
To target all of the worms, this dewormer uses a combination of ingredients: praziquantel, pyrantel pamoate and febantel.
These tablets are effective if your dog has an existing worm infestation. It works fast, and eliminates worms within a couple of days.
To get the best results from Quad, you do need to have an accurate idea of what your dog weighs.
There is weight overlap in the medium and large dog products, with dogs in the 45-60lbs range able to use either product.
Whichever size you choose, make sure you follow the dosage directions on the box so your dog is getting the right dosage according to his or her weight.
Bayer Quad Dewormer Dosage
There are 3 different versions of this dewormer available, depending upon your dog’s size. After choosing the right version, you then need to follow the instructions on the box to give the correct dosage to your dog, based on his or her weight. See the breakdown of dosages below:
Puppies and Small dogs – 2 lbs – 25 lbs
2-4 lbs – 1/2 tablet
5-7 lbs – 1 tablet
8-12 lbs – 1-1/2 tablet
13-18 lbs – 2 tablets
19-25 lbs – 2-1/2 tablets
Medium dogs – 26lbs – 60lbs
26-30 lbs – 1 tablet
31-44 lbs – 1-1/2 tablets
45-60 lbs – 2 tablets
Large dogs – 45lbs and up
45-60 lbs – 1 tablet
61-90 lbs – 1-1/2 tablets
91-120 lbs – 2 tablets
Pros and Cons of the Bayer Quad Dog Dewormer
We’d like to think that there’s a perfect worming product out there that works perfectly every single time, for every single dog. But this just isn’t the case – due to the vast number of variances in the health of individual dogs, some will have a really positive reaction to a certain wormer (in that it works as planned), while others might not see the most ideal results. While Bayer Quad works very well for the majority, it’s still worth looking at the specific pros and potential flaws of this worming product, so you can have some idea of what other people are experiencing.
Great things about Bayer Quad:
- Known to work very effectively in controlling worms
- Chewable: no forcing tablets down
- Weight specific doses: Detailed doses makes it easy to target what’s right for your dog’s weight
- Targets 4 main worm types in one
- Reasonable priced
Potential flaws with Bayer Quad Dewormer:
- Some fussy dogs might refuse to eat the tablet – in these cases, a regular pill or liquid is the better option
The Verdict? Quad Dewormer has significantly more benefits than potential downsides. For the small number of people who don’t see success with this dewormer (either due to their dog not wanting to eat the tablet, or for other reasons), there are many more who are using it to get rid of worms quickly and efficiently.
Sentry HC Worm X Plus
Active ingredients: Pyrantel pamoate and Praziquantel.
This wormer targets 3 of the main worm types: Tapeworms, Roundworms, Hookworms.
Make sure you choose the right product for your dog’s weight. It’s easy, with just two versions to pick from. One targets puppies and small dogs, while the high dose version is for medium to large dogs weighing 25lbs and up. If your dog hovers around the 25lbs mark or a little lower, you’ll want to go for the bigger dog version just to ensure that your dog gets an adequate dose to provide proper protection. It is perfectly safe to do this.
6 to 25pounds
The recommended dosage of Sentry HC Worm X Plus is as follows:
||Use Small Dog version
It uses a combination of two of the most common worming ingredients, in order to target these three worm types: Pyrantel pamoate and Praziquantel.
These are flavored chewable tablets, so there’s no need to try and force them down. Your dog should simply take one on its own, or mixed in with food if you have a particularly fussy pet.
It’s a once a month treatment. Simply mark a day on your calendar and make that your dog worming day.
The company notes that using Worm X Plus on pregnant and breeding dogs has not been conclusively studied or determined to be safe.
Nemex-2 Liquid Wormer
Active ingredient: Pyrantel pamoate
If you’re one of those people who dread trying to give your dog a tablet, a liquid wormer is an option. Nemex-2 is suitable for dogs aged 2 weeks+, so you can use it from the very first worming if you have young pups.
This product treats two types of worms: Hookworms and Roundworms. It is often recommended by vets.
It does not treat tapeworms. So if you know your dog has tapeworm, you’ll need another product that targets that worm type.
For every 10 pounds of your dog’s body weight, use 1 teaspoon of Nemex-2. The provided dropper has printed measurements, so you can prepare an accurate dose. Mixing it through soft food or dog milk makes it a very easy wormer to administer.
The taste of a liquid dewormer like this is important and people are thankfully quite pleased with their dog’s reaction to this one (some dogs even seem to enjoy it). It starts working very quickly, and within half a day or so you’ll start to notice whether your dog is infested with either hook or roundworms as they begin to expel from the body. If you want to be certain that you’ve got the infestation totally cleared, arrange for a fecal sample at your vet in the days following the worming treatment.
Natural & Holistic Dog Worm Prevention
If you want to take a more natural path and try something different from the traditional dewormers above, there are some wormers that use only natural ingredients.
But do they really work? I wanted to find out.
HomeoPet WRM Clear
For: Hookworm, Roundworm, Tapeworm.
This is a liquid formula that is designed to promote good natural health, and thus reducing the risk of a worm infestation. They clearly state that this product does not kill worms instantly.
Instead, it takes a slower and gentle approach to removing any existing worms from the body, and this can take up to two weeks to begin happening, and go on for four weeks.
So it’s a slow process, especially when compared to regular dewormers which start working almost immediately to rid the dog’s body of worms.
If your dog has worms right now and particularly has a bad infestation, this isn’t the product to use – you will need a dewormer like those described at the start of this guide.
So who would use HomeoPet and is it of any use?
This is for people who want to proactively try and prevent worms using natural ingredients.
You can easily administer HomeoPet directly into your dog’s water bowl. This is a very hands off method that makes it easy to deliver the dose without stressing the dog.
But HomeoPet WRM Clear really work?
The majority of reviews, comments and experiences with this natural wormer are positive.
This is a good sign, considering the tendency of people to feel more inclined to share their experiences when they are negative; but we are seeing a large number of very positive sentiments around HomeoPet WRM Clear.
Are there negative experiences being shared too? There are – and I want to cover all potential issues here so you have a solid base when it comes to what you can expect when you use this product.
Naturpet D Wormer
For: Pinworm, roundworm, tapeworm, whipworm, ringworm, giardia.
A herbal liquid formula that targets more types of worms than the HomeoPet liquid, including the parasitic infection giardia.
Because of the all natural ingredients, Naturpet D (like the HomeoPet) can also be used with other animals. It is ideal to use as a preventative measure, rather than a treatment for a heavy worm problem. However, if you do choose to use this liquid to rid a dog of worms, use it twice a day by administering on your dog’s food. It won’t bring immediate results, and you need to continue using it for at least a week after the last sign of worms.
It can also be used after a case of worm infestation, to soothe the intestinal tract and provide some relief from the trauma of worms.
Let’s look at some of the other natural ways that people consider treating or preventing intestinal worms in dogs, and what evidence there is (if any) that they might work. Take note that these ideas are not intended to treat an existing infestation, which must be taken care of swiftly using a proven dewormer like those above. Natural methods are targeted at prevention in the environment and in maintaining good intestinal health in a dog – as well as preventing fleas which are a carrier for some worms.
Garlic is a well known immunity booster. Some studies have found that moderate amount of garlic given to mice prevented worms better than a popular worming product ingredient.
The scientists noted that garlic “may be useful as an alternative treatment against nematode parasites in animals and human.” Not everyone is comfortable giving their dog garlic however, and it’s often listed as a food that isn’t recommended for canines.
It’s important therefore to weigh up the possible pros and cons of considering garlic as part of a natural worm control and prevention routine in dogs.
Diatomaceous Earth is often touted as a natural way of controlling fleas, worms and ticks in pet dogs and cats. There have been numerous studies carried out, with one showing good results for the effectiveness of DE as an internal parasite controller in hens.
DE is basically microscopic phytoplankton, so it’s a completely organic product.
And when you can control fleas successfully, you automatically help control the worms that come about as a result.
Important note: if you’re going to use DE on and around your pets, always select “human grade” or food grade diatomaceous earth. Any other type, such as industrial grade sold for use in swimming pools, is not considered safe for use around pets and people.
Dogs can eat food grade DE if you choose to use it, by mixing it in with their food (being mindful of the dosage – the largest dogs would have no more than 2 tablespoons at once, with small dogs having a tiny amount recommended at no more than 2% by weight of the animal’s meal).
Note that it’s important to avoid inhaling this product though (both humans and animals). Again, it’s up to you to determine that potential positives and negatives of using DE as a method of controlling worms and fleas in dogs and cats.
If you plan to use DE as a method of long term flea and parasite control in dogs and the general environment, keep in mind that if your dog already has intestinal parasites then a course of a traditional dewormer will always be the fastest and most assured way of quickly eliminating the immediate problem – something that’s vital to do for your dog’s health.
What is the Best dewormer for puppies?
Any of the deworming products which have a puppy version are suited for use on young dogs. The standard is that pups should be wormed once every 2 weeks until they reach 12 weeks of age, or according to recommendations from your vet.
Types of Worms
Tapeworms make use of fleas as a middle man, or an intermediate host. The flea consumes the eggs of the worm, and this is where they hatch. The dog then becomes infected with the tapeworm when he or she ingests the flea. Then, the tapeworm adult makes its way to the intestines where it begins its parasitic life inside your dog. More eggs are laid, which pass through the dog, then more fleas ingest the worms, and this is how a bad infestation of tapeworm comes about. The key is to break the cycle: targeting both the tapeworms and the fleas.
This process means that where there are fleas in your home, your yard and on your dog, the presence of tapeworm is a high probability. Treating for tapeworm is always recommended when you notice fleas (and of course, treating for fleas is vital too).
This intestinal worm has a nasty hook type mouth which it uses to attach to the walls of the intestines and they can get very large – up to 8″ long. Because tapeworms have segments on the body, when a dog passes the worm in its faeces it will often come out in segments, which can make it hard for the untrained eye to notice they are part of a worm as they can look like tiny rice grains or seeds.
Dogs will often become itchy around the anus if they are infected with tapeworms, so you might notice scratching and dragging around in a sitting position. While tapeworms are one of the least harmful intestinal worms, rarely causing really serious health problems, getting rid of them is still extremely important for your dog’s comfort and health. Puppies in particularly, however, can suffer more seriously from tapeworms if left untreated.
Lungworm is a serious parasite that can cause considerable health problems in dogs – and can be fatal if left untreated. Many people are surprised to find out how dogs can get lungworm: by eating snails and slugs which are carriers of lungworm larvae. Dogs may not purposely eat these creatures, but even accidental ingestion of one of these infected gastropods or infected water can bring about lungworm in a dog. You will find that many worming products do not treat lungworm.
It’s called lungworm because this is where the worm settles: in the dog’s trachea (windpipe) and lungs. As you would expect, this can cause serious respiratory (breathing) problems. A vet needs to diagnose whether your dog has lungworm. This can be done by x-rays, physical exams, fecal exams, blood count and other examinations.
Heartworm is actually a type of roundworm that affects the heart as well as the lungs. Dogs living in tropical and sub-tropical climates are more likely to be exposed, and dogs living in an area that is known for hosting this parasite have an almost certainty of suffering from an infestation.
The alarming thing about heartworm is that there are often no noticeable symptoms at all until it’s reached a stage where the dog is very unwell. Then you can start seeing shortness of breath and coughing, which can lead to fainting, blood being coughed up and sadly, sudden death can occur from heart failure.
This is why heartworm prevention in dogs is so vital.
A vet needs to diagnose heartworm in order to confirm whether a dog has been infected with the parasite. Depending upon how severe the parasite has progressed, your vet will recommend an appropriate course of treatment.
Prevention of heartworm is so important. Preventative medication can include monthly spot-on products, or a more convenient once or twice yearly injection that you can have done at your vet called ProHeart.
Are there any side effects with dog dewormers?
A small minority of dogs might experience some unwanted effects after being wormed. However in many cases, these apparent side effects are the same or similar as the effects caused by the worm infestation itself. The most commonly reported effects are:
- Lack of appetite
Some companies have carried out studies to determine just how common side effects are when using their deworming products. One of these is Panacur C, which noted that out of 240 of the dogs treated with their dewormer product, around 1% of them experienced vomiting afterwards. That was 3 dogs out of the 240.
The goal of a dewormer is to kill or expel any worms from the dog’s body, so this is understandably not always going to be a comfortable or pleasant process. But it’s a necessary one because the existence of worms poses a much greater threat than the short term discomfort of removing them. Seeing worms (either live or dead) in the faeces or vomit following worming a dog means the parasites are being successfully removed. If you’re worried that your dog’s post-worming behavior is ongoing or severe, discuss it with your vet.
To help avoid side effects, don’t worm on an empty stomach?
So should you be worried if your dog has some gastrointestinal upset after you’ve wormed him?
As for any potentially more serious risks – these can largely be avoided by not using low quality deworming products where quality control and ingredients may be questionable.
If your dog is sick, do not use a dewormer. Instead, seek veterinary attention to find out the cause.
When should you start worming a puppy?
The veterinary recommendation for worming puppies is:
- Worm every 2 weeks until the dog reaches 12 weeks old
- Until the dog is 6 months old, worm once a month
- From 6 months old onwards, worm every 3 months or according to the directions of your chosen deworming product