Monday, January 20, 2014

5 Common Parasites and Diseases That Are Spread by Dog Poop | #ScoopThatPoop

Welcome to this month's #ScoopThatPoop Campaign. Other bloggers are invited to join this campaign by entering the #ScoopThatPoop Blog Hop hosted by Golden Woofs, Oz the Terrier, My GBGV Life, The World According to Garth Riley, and The Lazy Pit Bull


If you haven't heard by now, scooping your dog's poop is important! Sometimes while deciding on a topic for my #ScoopThatPoop campaign posts I come across some really bad information. A lot of this misinformation is regarding parasites and diseases that are spread by dog poop. It also seems that many dog owners are misinformed about this topic in general, as well. 

So, I decided to get creative and make an infographic about the common parasites and diseases that are spread by dog poop. 

I'd like to start by telling you what parasites dog poop is NOT responsible for. 

Dogs do not get heartworms from dog poop. Heartworms come from mosquito bites and fecal matter is not related to this disease process whatsoever. I was quite surprised by the number of dog poop articles out there that claim that dog poop is how dogs get heartworms. It's not!

Secondly, dogs do not get pinworms. If your child has pinworms, don't blame it on your dog. Pinworms are a human parasite that is spread by fecal matter. Horses get pinworms too. But not dogs. 

So now that we have those facts straight, let's talk about 5 common parasites and diseases that CAN be spread by dog poop.


1. Roundworms are nematodes that commonly affect young puppies. These worms live in the stomach and intestines of dogs. Puppies can pick up a roundworm infection while they are still in the womb of their mother or from her milk after they are born. Or dogs can become infected by ingesting soil contaminated with roundworm eggs. The soil becomes contaminated from the feces of a dog who has these worms.

2. Hookworms are another nematode that like to infect puppies. Of course, a dog of any age can certainly get them. These worms are microscopic and live in the small intestine of their host. Hookworms are dangerous to dogs, especially puppies, because they can potentially cause anemia. They feed on blood, so large infections of hookworms are problematic. Hookworms are zoonotic, which means people can get them too. And did you know that they can actually pass through your skin? That's why your mother told you to wear shoes out in the yard when you were young.

3. Whipworms are also passed through dog stool. And they happen to be one of the hardest parasites to get rid of once their eggs get in your yard. It could potentially take several months to rid your dog of a whipworm infection. They get their name because they look like whips. One end is fat, like a whip handle and the rest of the worm is very long and skinny. These worms are microscopic. They also have the coolest looking eggs. (Can you tell I am a little too into my parasitology?)

4. Giardia is not a worm. It's a protozoal parasite. It causes dogs and cats to become sick with symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting. It makes them feel pretty crummy. It's not easy to get rid of, either. Many dogs and cats pick up giardia by drinking from contaminated water puddles. Contaminated poop that's left un-scooped washes away with rain water and then other animals drink it. This can infect people also.

5. Parvo is a life threatening virus that infects puppies and young dogs. This viral infection is no joke. Puppies with parvo will be extremely lethargic, have bloody diarrhea, vomiting, and dehydration. Parvovirus can live in the environment for years and there isn't much that can kill it. Bleach is an effective method of killing this virus in it's environment. Parvo is not something that people get.

Prevention

For prevention of the three worms mentioned above, there is a once-a-month pill that you can give your dog. That's right - most heartworm preventions also protect your dog against these worms. You'll need to check on whipworms though, because not all protect against those. 

There is a vaccination for Giardia, but it's efficacy is questionable. Don't let your dog drink from puddles! 

There is also a vaccination for Parvo, which all dogs should get when they are puppies! Don't let your puppy walk around at the pet store, dog park, or other places like this. You don't know what's lurking in the soil and it's better to be safe than sorry. 

And the easiest way you can help to prevent ALL of these common parasites and diseases that are spread by dog poop is to pick up after your dog! It's as simple as that! All you have to do is SCOOP THAT POOP! Don't let your dog spread parasites and disease to other dogs, cats, and even humans. 

Anyone interested in sharing this infograpic is welcome to! All I ask is that you credit the source back to me.

48 comments:

  1. Great infographic, Ann! Obviously it is terrible to leave poop laying around that can make our beloved pet sick but I just don't get why people don't care about making themselves and their neighbors sick! So many fecal born parasites can be passed on to humans and giardia in the water supply is a serious problem prevented by (drum roll, please) cleaning up after your dog 100% of the time!

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    1. Thanks Bethany! It's a problem with a very simple solution :)

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  3. That really brings home the importance of scooping the poop. We have a lot of naughty people here who do not. We are annoyed they don't and you are right it is serious as it spreads ichies. Have a marvellous Monday.
    Best wishes Molly

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  4. Love your infographic! You did a great job on that!

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  5. Great post! I agree with you, the worm-problem would be easier to handle when all remove their poop. It drives my mom crazy when I sniff on strange landmines. Thanks for all the informations!

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  6. Ick!
    Great info though! It is so much more important for people to scoop their poop then anyone thinks!
    Everything you have said and also nobody likes stepping in a fresh pile of dog poop while we are walking our own dogs!!
    ((husky hugz))
    "love is being owned by a husky"

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  7. Great post, Miss Ann! A lot of people get confused about what yucky parasites and diseases can be spread through dog poop to other dogs as well as people. That's why everyone should just #ScoopThatPoop! (Oh, great infographic also! I'm pinning it. BOL)
    Happy Monday,
    Oz

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    1. Thank you Oz! It is very confusing. I agree with you that you should just pick it up and then maybe we wouldn't have to worry about some of them!

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  8. Ann you are talking my language, I am the neighborhood "pain in the poop" - I can't stand it!!! If you can't pick up poop, don't get a dog, try fish!!! Thanks so much for this post. Harley came to me on deaths door from "the worse case of giardia" (a quote from our vet) ever! It took me over a year to get it completely out of his system. I will snatch the info graphic and use it later, of course all doodle shout outs to you girl. Take care.

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    1. Thank you so much! Giardia is one of those things that can either be very mild or extremely severe. And even if your dog or cat recovers from it, they can still relapse later on. Not fun!

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  9. AWESOME infographic! Did you make it from scratch, or use a website? LOVE it!

    Thanks for the reminder that it's not just GROSS when people don't clean up after their dogs, it's also a health hazard for everyone!

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    1. Thank you Christina. I did use PicMonkey (your fave) to make it!

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  10. Great information and post. Lets make signs of the infographic and post them EVERYWHERE!

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  11. Your information is invaluable and I hope anyone that leaves their dog's poop where it drops reads it. Besides being a danger to other dogs, it is irresponsible and causes negative feelings toward the owner & their pet.

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  12. GREAT Post Ann and PAWsome infographic you created. Such a good information for everyone to know as many irresponsible dog owners just don't understand it. Golden Happy you are part of our #ScoopThatPoop hop, helping the importance of scooping dog's poop. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

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  13. Fabulous infograph gf! When I rescued Titan, we battled Girardia 3 times before we finally kicked it. OMG, it was horrible. Washing bedding and everything every night was a major pain in the bum. My vet said it was common in dogs that were kenneled. Thankfully, that's all done and we don't have issues anymore. :)

    Great post Ann!

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    1. Sorry he had to deal with it. It can be a real pain in the butt to get rid of, as you obviously know. Glad it's over with now though!

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  14. Great post and lets hope now they have seen this, those that DON'T scoop, will now think twice xxooxxx

    Mollie and Alfie

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  15. Two more months and you could have coincided this with the International Pooper Scooper Week. According to Chase's Calendar of Events, this occurs annually the first week of April. This was first introduced by the only national trade organization for professional pooper scoopers, www.apaws.org, over 10 years ago as a way to bring awareness to the effects of dog waste and the associated parasites that you mentioned in your blog. This should be a year round event!

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    1. Hi Tim, myself and the other blogs mentioned above are doing this year round! Once a month, we promote our #ScoopThatPoop campaign and blog hop. Very interesting though, thanks for sharing. I did not know about this event.

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  16. You made this infographic? You did an excellent job!!! Great information, too. I was thinking about diseases and parasites when I walked about picking up dog poop at the dog park.

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    1. Thank you Dawn! I did make it a few months ago, and have been hanging on to it for a while now.

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  17. I came home from the shelter with Giardia but our vet caught it! Very good information and advice thanks! Love Dolly

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    1. Well, sorry you had the yucky giardia but glad it's better now Dolly!

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  18. Dang, I would have thought that dog poop was about as natural as it could get!

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  19. I just read someplace recently that heartworms were in poop; I thought it was strange, but went with it so thanks for clarifying.

    We're very careful with our puppies - the only place they go is to the vet, they stay on our property where we know poop is picked up, because people not picking up after their dogs is a huge problem here.

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    1. Hey Kimberly, I don't remember exactly what I was searching for but some of the top posts that came up on Google claimed that heartworms are passed through dog poop. I was quite amazed that this information was ranked so highly! I know you've dealt with Parvo before, so good for you keeping your puppies safe.

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  20. Ooh yuck! That sounds like the best motivation to scoop it up and away.

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  21. My neighbors have at least 1 dog, possibly 3 and rarely pick up dog poop. We live in a row of townhouses and the dog(s) frequently relieve themselves on our side of the yard (which admittedly is very small to begin with). Numerous times at night I have accidentaly stepped in dog poop walking from my car to the back steps and have tracked it into my house! I dont think they realize how unsanitary their dogs waste is!

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    1. Hey Diane - yikes! That really stinks... literally... in the past, a few bloggers have posted how to create signs to hang up in your neighborhood or even waste bag stations. Apartment complexes and other similar communities seem to be a breeding ground for giardia in particular. At least in our area - Austin, TX.

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  22. What a great infographic! I had no idea there were so many diseases and parasites that could be spread. I always bring along waste bags on Chuy's walks and make sure to clean up after him. I just don't understand do owners that think it's acceptable to not scoop the poop!

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    1. Good job Aimee! And thank you. There are more than just 5 I am sure, but there are just some of the most common things that we see.

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  23. too many dog owners need to learn to scoop,trouble is the ones that don't give good owners a bad rep.xx Rachel

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  24. That info graphic was great! I pinned and tweeted thanks for sharing.

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  25. Thanks for sharing this great infographic! I always make a point to scoop my dog's poop. But there are dog owners in my area who doesn't.

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  26. Hi there - I would like to share this with my Chihuahua group and on some of my facebook pages as well... is that ok? www.southsuburbanchihuahua.com - let me know - WOOF! ;o)

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    1. Most certainly dear Piranha :) share as you like!

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  27. I love the graphic! I've missed so many scoop the poop blog hops but I'm glad they're going strong. Gotta get that message out there!

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