What is Pyrantel for Cats?

Cat Medication

Cats are exceptional creatures who change our lives for the better. We love our pets and show concern by taking them to the vet if they’re sick or if we suspect there is any kind of health problem. Cats also require preventative treatment to ensure they remain free of internal parasites. If you suspect your cat has worms your veterinary health provider may provide a medication called Pyrantel. Most animal healthcare providers will take the time to answer your questions or concerns, unless the clinic is exceptionally busy, or if you forget to ask. We’ve compiled a guide to answer the most common questions about Pyrantel for cats, to help you understand the benefits and the drawbacks of this medication.

What is Pyrantel for Cats?

VCA Hospitals explains that Pyrantel for cats is a medication commonly prescribed as a dewormer for cats and dogs. The medication treats intestinal parasites in cats. it may also be used to treat roundworms and hookworms in smaller animals. Pyrantel Pamoate is sold under the brand name Nemex and Nemex 2. It is also used off-label for other uses including treatment for heartworm. This drug is in the anthelmintic category. It works by paralyzing parasitic worms, forcing them to release their attachment to the intestines of the host. It is used as a treatment and prevention for hookworms and roundworms. This medication does not kill tapeworms or whipworms.

Is Pyrantel effective in treating worms in cats?

Wagwalking reports that studies involved thirty cats of all breeds to test the efficacy of Pyrantel for eradicating certain parasitic infections in cats. The cats had both induced and natural infections of hookworm and reline roundworms. Cats received dosages of the medication in both paste form and granule form. Pyrantel in paste form proved to be 100 percent effective in killing both types of parasites. The granule formulation reduced fecal egg counts by 99.9 percent. Both forms were 100 percent effective in killing adult worms in cats.

Is Pyrantel safe for cats and kittens?

Pet owners with kittens must take special care of these precious little ones in their developmental stages of life. Some medications can have adverse effects on young kittens. Studies to test the safety of Pyrantel showed that it is safe for use in young kittens. None of the adult cats in the study suffered adverse effects from the medications. Another study tested Pyrantel in thirty kittens. The babies received 100 mg per kg of weight for three days. None of the kittens receiving this high dose of medication suffered adverse effects. As with any medication or supplement, there is always the risk of an individual cat having an adverse reaction. If your cat shows symptoms of an allergic reaction, contact an animal healthcare provider immediately and discontinue use. Signs of an allergic reaction include swelling of the eyes, face, nose, and mouth, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and itching.

What are the side effects of Pyrantel for cats?

Not all cats experience side effects, but it’s possible with Pyrantel. The most common side effects are straining when using the litter box, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Cats may experience one or more of these symptoms, but they are usually mild and go away after treatment ends. Pyrantel is not toxic to felines. The symptoms, if any, are usually byproducts of their body eliminating the dead worms. If side effects become severe or lasts more than a few days, you should contact your pet’s animal healthcare provider.

How long does Pyrantel stay in a cat’s system?

Pyrantel is a short-acting medication. The effects of the medication in healthy cats stop within twenty-four hours. Effects may last longer in cats with liver or kidney disease. If your cat is otherwise healthy, and he experiences side effects from the medication, they should clear up after 24 hours.

Is Pyrantel safe for all cats?

Adult cats and young kittens may safely take Pyrantel with no toxic effects. Pregnant and lactating cats may be safely treated with Pyrantel. There are a few precautions that you should take, however. Cats that are sick or severely weak should not be given Pyrantel. Pyrantel should not be given in conjunction with other dewormers. You should also avoid giving your cat Pyrantel if it has been exposed to organophosphate insecticides. Cats that have shown a sensitivity or allergic reaction to this medication in the past should not take Pyrantel. It’s important to be prepared to see live roundworms passed in your cat’s feces after treatment. Sometimes worms are expelled from your cat’s body while they are still alive. You should wear gloves when cleaning your cat’s litterbox to avoid contamination. Wash and sanitize the box frequently when your cat is expelling worms after treatment. If you have multiple pets in the household, it’s recommended that you treat them all with dewormer to avoid re-infestations of these parasites. +

Can Pyrantel interact with other drugs or supplements?

There is a chance of Pyrantel pamoate interacting with any anthelmintic drugs such as piperazine, morantel, or levamisole, and any organophosphate insecticides. You should advise your pet’s healthcare provider about all medications, supplements, herbal therapies, or vitamins your cat is taking before it receives a dose of Pyrantel.

How is Pyrantel administered?

Pyrantel usually comes in liquid or tablet forms. If you obtain a prescription from your veterinarian, you should follow the instructions given at the pharmacy. Pyrantel liquid must be shaken before it is used to mix the active ingredients fully with the carrier fluids. Measure the liquid precisely as directed to avoid under or overdosing. The liquid has a pleasant taste and may be given directly or fed with your cat’s regular food. Tablets may be fed with food or crushed up in your cat’s regular diet, but your cat must ingest the entire dosage amount in one feeding. Mark your calendar for a second treatment in two to four weeks to kill any roundworms or hookworms that have not yet migrated through your cat’s digestive system. Some cats require a third deworming two to four weeks after the second dosage. Indoor cats should be dewormed once per year. Outdoor cats should be dewormed at least twice per year if not more. The typical dosage of Pyrantel is between 2.5 to 5 mg per pound.

Do you need a prescription for Pyrantel?

A prescription is not required to purchase Pyrantel. It is an over-the-counter drug. Your vet may write you a prescription or dispense the medication from the clinic. You can also purchase Pyrantel for cats at most pet stores that sell pet healthcare products. it’s a commonly used medication that is available where animal health products are sold. You can also find Pyrantel online in its generic form and under the brand names Strongid, Nemex, or Nemex 2. We recommend that you only purchase Pyrantel from a reputable distributor to ensure that you get the authentic version of the drug and not a knockoff version. Some manufacturers may sell medications that contain unsafe ingredients. Always check the label and the reputation of the distributor before purchasing this product.

What to do if you miss a dose of Pyrantel?

If you miss a dose of Pyrantel for your cat, give the dose as soon as you remember. You should not give two doses at the same time. If the dose is more than halfway through the dosing cycle, skip it and give the next dose at the regularly scheduled time.

How are worms diagnosed in cats?

Pet MD advises that you may not see symptoms of worm infestations in your cat. Sometimes they are expelled in fecal matter and may appear in your cat’s litterbox. Your cat may drag its rear end on the floor because of the itching and discomfort they cause, but often, there are no visible symptoms. Your cat’s healthcare provider may recommend a test called fecal floatation to check for intestinal parasites. A small fecal sample is taken from your cat and placed in a solution that causes the eggs to float. Floating matter is examined under a microscope to determine the kind of infestation, if any, your cat may have. It’s a step that can help your vet determine the best type of dewormer to eliminate the infestations.

How do cats get worms?

There are a few ways that cats can get worms. Mice and rats are carriers, according to Next Gen Vet RX. They may be present in rat feces and passed on to cats who hunt rats and mice. Cats can also become infected by stray dogs or cats in the neighborhood. The eggs are too tiny to see with the naked eye. Animals who eat or drink from the same receptacles are at risk of passing on the infections and keeping them going in a household. It’s worse when they’re outside pets. The best way to prevent internal parasitic infestations in your cat is to keep him indoors, keep stray animals away, and deworm all animals in the house as recommended by your veterinarian. It’s a common problem, especially for outdoor animals and it spreads like wildfire. Humans may also become infected with many of the worms that animals carry, so it’s wise to take precautions when going through the deworming process with your pets.

How dangerous is a worm infestation for cats?

Most cats remain asymptomatic, even when infected with intestinal parasites, but some cats become gravely ill. Worms can cause diarrhea, a distended abdomen, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting in extreme cases. There is a potential for your cat to become very sick if left untreated. Adult cats are more resilient than kittens. Young kittens may become severely ill because of intestinal parasites. It can lead to blood in the stool and worse complications. It’s best to have your cats checked by a vet and follow his recommendations to ensure that your housepets are free from parasitic infections.

How expensive is Pyrantel for cats?

Pyrantel for cats may be purchased in two dosage sizes over the counter. It comes in tablets of 22.7 mg and 113.5 mg. It is also available in a liquid oral suspension of 2.27 mg/ml and 4.54 mg/ml. The tables cost approximately $1.30 per pill. The liquid suspension is approximately $20 per bottle. If you purchase Pyrantel over the counter for your cat without a recommendation from your pet’s vet, it’s essential to ensure that you follow the recommended dosage on the packaging. Weigh your cat to determine the required dosage, and measure out the medication with precision. Underdosing may not be as effective in eradicating worms. Overdosing is not recommended.

Final thoughts

Pyrantel for cats is an effecting deworming medication that is commonly prescribed for treating hookworms and roundworms in cats. It is safe for most cats including adult cats, elderly cats, young kittens, and pregnant or lactating females. There is no known toxicity in felines for this drug. It is approved as safe by the FDA for use in treating these medical conditions. Pyrantel will not kill whipworms or tapeworms. Pyrantel is often combined with other deworming medications at the factory, but you should never combine this drug with other dewormers. Leave that to the professionals. It’s wise to keep an eye on your cat for the first 24 hours after administering this medication, to ensure that he does not have an allergic or other adverse reaction. If you suspect your cat has worms, it’s best to take your pet in for testing to ensure that Pyrantel is the most appropriate medication. Your vet can accurately diagnose the kind of worm infestation your cat has and recommend the best dewormer. Side effects are rare and usually mild, but some cats may have a more severe reaction to this medication, but again, it’s rare. Pyrantel is a leading choice for treating worms in cats.

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