When your cat has tapeworms, you may find small, rice-like tapeworm eggs in areas where you pet sleeps or spends a lot of time. You can also notice these small worm segments around your cat's rear end or faeces. Newly expelled tapeworm segments may move until they die, at which point they appear smaller and more brown in colour. While the risk of tapeworm infection from these eggs is low, you can remove traces of the tapeworm.
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Things you need
- Vacuum with attachments
- Washing machine
Remove your linens from your bed and wash them in a washing machine to remove tapeworm eggs. Shake out your sheets, pillowcases and comforter first to dislodge the tapeworm segments. Vacuum the area after shaking your linens. Take dry-clean only linens to your dry cleaner for cleaning.
Vacuum or shake off your pillows. The eggs will die and dry out and are not contagious. Replace the pillows only if you are uncomfortable with the idea of your pillows harbouring the remnants inside the padding or cushioning.
Vacuum any egg segments from your mattress using a vacuum attachment. Use the vacuum hose to vacuum any edges or corners within your bed frame or creases in your mattress where eggs could collect.
Vacuum the carpeted areas around your bed and bedroom furniture to pick up any remaining tapeworm eggs. Use an attachment to reach beneath furniture. Your cat or your body can pick up eggs from your carpet or on your flooring and bring them into bed with you.
Tips and warnings
- Most tapeworms infect pets when your pet swallows an infected flea. Flea control is essential to tapeworm control.
- Clean your cat's litter box frequently to prevent tapeworm reinfection.
- Although unlikely, you can become infected by ingesting a flea or the tapeworm eggs after handing your cats faeces or cleaning the litter box. Wash your hands regularly to prevent tapeworm infection.
- Although you do not need to disinfect the area, you can use a disinfecting spray that is safe for fabrics to disinfect your bed.
- If your cat has fleas and you only treat the tapeworm infection, the worm can come back in at little as two weeks, according to Tape-Worm.info. Treat for fleas even if you have not seen signs of fleas.
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