Pets Are Important Too

The 4 Most Common Parasites Found In Dogs

by Aurore Fontai

When it comes to your beloved dog, you probably want the best for it and its health. However, there are many things that can come in between your pet and fully healthy lifestyle. One of the biggest detriments to your pet's health are parasites. Numerous parasites can affect how your dog goes about its business and leads a normal day-to-day life. It is good practice to keep yourself informed of what kind of parasites can pose a threat to your beloved pet. Throughout the course of this brief article, you will learn 4 of the most common parasites found in dogs.


Fleas are the scourge of the pet owner's world. Fleas are common among all mammalian pets, but dogs find themselves particularly susceptible to this pesky pest due to their time spent outdoors and their thick fur. There are numerous ways in which you can get rid of fleas and make your dogs less susceptible to their wily ways. The problem is that every breed of flea is different and every dog reacts differently to different treatments. It is best to consult with your trusted vet in order to discover what method or combination of methods will work best towards eradicating the menace of fleas from your pet's life. Collars, shampoos, and dips are all viable options.


Heartworms are parasites that live in the blood vessels of the lung and the heart, and these bad boys are transmitted mainly through mosquitoes biting one host carrier and then transmitting it to the next.

Heartworms are common mainly in smaller breeds of dogs, but dogs of all shapes and sizes can be affected by this hellacious parasite. After a pet has contracted heartworms, it can be very difficult to treat, and in many cases, this can be fatal for your pet. However, the bright side is that heartworms are easy to prevent and you can easily get your dogs preventative shots in order to keep them from ever contracting heartworms in the first place.

Ear Mites

Have you noticed that your dog has taken a liking to scratching at their ears, as of late? If you have, you might want to have them examined, especially if the scratching is causing severe irritation or bleeding, as this might be indicative of the fact that they have contracted ear mites.

Ear mites are a pest that lives the majority of their lifespan in the canal of a dog's ear. Ear mites are usually not a severe issue and can usually be treated with prescription ear drops that you can easily procure from your trusted vet. At worst, ear mites can cause mange in your pet.

Demodex Mites

Demodex mites are incredibly common and almost every dog will inherit this parasite at some point during their lifespan. They are microscopic agents that live on the skin of host dogs. The fact of the matter is, demodex mites are quite benign parasites and will usually do nothing to harm your dog's health whatsoever; there is generally little cause for alarm if demodex mites are present on your dog's skin. However, if there is a preponderance of demodex mites on your animal's skin, you might find that there might be some issues that need to be resolved. Namely, a severe amount of demodex mites can cause mange or patchy hair loss.

Parasites can make your dog's skin their home. Luckily, there is usually little to fear when it comes to dogs and parasites. Consult with a trusted vet at a clinic like Pet Medical Center – Full Service Veterinary Care to learn more about preventative measures and cures for parasites that can potentially or already have made your dog their host, respectively.