How to Deworm a Puppy

A Practical Guide on How to Deworm a Puppy

If your puppy is suffering from worms, that can affect their growth and have lifetime effects on your pup. In addition, worms can have adverse effects on your pup’s body and even immune system. So, it’s essential to know “How to Deworm a Puppy” if you have a puppy at home.

Table of Contents

Why is it Important to Deworm your Puppy?

As mentioned above, there can be lifelong negative effects for your puppy if you don’t deworm them. Different kinds of worms can cause other effects like “Hookworms” can cause anemia, and “Roundworms” can lead to poor growth and development in puppies. For adult doggos, these parasites may life-threatening rarely. But for puppies, it’s another story. So it’s crucial that you deworm your pup if they have intestinal parasites. You can see these symptoms in your pup if they have worms on their system.


  • Severe Weight Loss – Intestinal parasites can cause extreme weight loss on a puppy in a short period. You can observe this if you are keeping checks on your puppy’s growth. So, it’s imperative to keep track of your puppy’s development from the beginning.
  • Vomiting – Puppy will frequently vomit, even without eating anything. This will also make their weight degrease.
  • Anemia – If a pup has intestinal parasites in its system, then it will have fewer red blood cells in its system. This anemia will make that pup more tired and weaker than a typical pup.
  • Dehydration – Pup will have less water in their system. This will cause them to have sunken dry-looking eyes, have a dry nose and sticky gums, and even a loss of skin elasticity. This can also cause your pup to pant (breathing with short quick breaths since they are out of breath).
  • Coughing – Pup may cough without any reason. Occasional coughing is regular for a pup, but a pup that has intestinal parasites in its system will cough regularly.
  • Low Energy – Unlike a typical puppy, a puppy with intestinal parasites in its system will have low energy. So they tend to sleep a lot and have less activity. This is very uncommon for a pup since most pups are very active. So, you can identify this symptom with ease.
  • Diarrhea – Puppy may have constant diarrhea even without eating anything. This is due to its body trying to get rid of intestinal parasites.

Not just these symptoms, if your pup has worms, then they would also show these signs.

How to Deworm a Puppy
  • Dull Coat

Less nutrition can lead your pup to have a dull coat. This will indicate that your pup is not healthy. One of the most common reasons for a puppy to have a light coat is intestinal parasites (worms).

  • Excessive Itching

Your puppy may have itching all over their body. This is due to dehydration and a dull coat. Since intestinal parasites can cause dry skin, that can cause your pup’s skin to itch a lot. So, if you notice this behavior in your puppy and there are no ticks or anything that can cause itching, then worms may be the cause.

  • Skin Irritation

Dry skin and excessive itching can lead to skin irritation. You can notice patches of irritated skin (rashes) on your pup when this happens. You can combine baking soda with water and apply them to your pup’s skin as a solution for this. Make sure that you mix 50% of water with 50% baking soda. Leave them for 20 minutes after applying and rinse them thoroughly. This will help with irritated skin but keep in mind that if the cause for skin irritation is worms, this would only be a temporary solution.

  • Eat more food than Usual.

Your pup may crave more food and eat more than usual. This is a clear indication of intestinal parasites if their weight decreases even when they consume more.

  • Pot Belly Appearance

Puppies with worms are most likely to have a potbelly. This is a clear indication that there is something wrong with their digesting system.

  • Visible Worms in feces or vomit

If the pup’s condition is severe, you can even notice visible worms in their feces or vomit. Some dog owners think that when they see worms in feces or vomits, their pup’s condition will get better because their body is getting rid of worms by itself. That is wrong. You can notice worms in feces and vomit because there are too many intestinal parasites already in the pup’s system. If this happens then, immediate deworming must occur.

  • Rubbing their butt on the ground

Since intestinal parasites or worms can cause a pup’s butt to itch, they tend to rub their butt on the ground a lot. This is also a clear and unique indication that that pup needs immediate deworming.

How to Deworm a Puppy

How to Deworm a Puppy?

If you have identified that your pup needs deworming, then the next question that comes to mind is “How to deworm a puppy?” This is a schedule to deworm puppies correctly.

Deworming Schedule for Puppies

  • If your Pup is 8 Weeks Old

Your pup should get their first 5 in 1 vaccine or their first parvo/ distemper combination vaccine. This is also the time to give your puppy their first dewormer to eliminate intestinal parasites like hookworm or roundworm. 

You can visit this link if you are comfortable administering vaccines using needles without the help of a vet.

  • If your Pup is 12 Weeks Old

If your pup is 12 weeks old, they will need a booster with parvo/ distemper vaccine if they are getting it for the first time. It’s an excellent thing to administer booster pravo vaccines every 3 to 4 weeks until your pup is 16 weeks old. Also, your puppy might need a vaccine for bordetella or kennel cough depend on their breed. Also, it’s better to administer a follow-up dewormer so it may kill brown ticks, skin mites, roundworms, or parasite- carrying fleas that your dog may have ingested.

  • If your Pup is 16 Weeks Old

Administer the “third” parvo/ distemper vaccine and if needed, administer the second bordetella. Remember that your puppy is old enough to have their first one year rabies vaccine at 16 weeks of age. Make sure that you examine your pup’s feces for parasites so you can make sure that a third-round dewormer is necessary or not.

How to Deworm a Puppy

Most common mistakes of Deworming a Puppy

  • Giving anti-parasitic without knowing your pup’s weight

Most dog owners make this mistake. They assume that a bit of weight difference would not matter when administering dewormers, but that’s false. The effect of dewormers depends solely on the amount you administer to your puppy. So if you give anti-parasitic without knowing your pup’s weight, that won’t be an effective deworming process. So, always check your pup’s weight and administer dewormers according to that weight.  

  • Forgetting to re-administer anti-parasite medication a few days later

Usually, when you administer deworm medication orally, you will have to administer a second dosage after 15 days. Forgetting to re-administer anti-parasite medication can make the first dose obsolete. So, the second dose is also essential when deworming your pup.

  • Assuming that all internal parasites would be eliminated by anti-parasitic

Dewormers don’t eliminate all internal parasites. Therefore, the best method is to administer “Broad Spectrum” anti-parasitic. They eliminate adult worms and larvae. There are more specific anti-parasitic that eliminates giardia and coccidian. However, these medications are only administered if such parasites are present in your doggo’s system.

  • Thinking that a puppy should be dewormed every 3 or 6 months or only once a year

In the modern world, most dogs interact with more animals daily. For example, they interact with other pets in parks, and even we have a closer bond with your puppies and dogs. These kinds of habits makes monthly deworming necessary to prevent any severe worm-related issues for both dogs and family members. 

  • Deworming only one pet when you have more than one

A common mistake people make is deworming only one pet when they have multiple pets or deworming all pets but not simultaneously. Keep in mind that if you have more than one pet, you have to deworm all of them at the same time. Otherwise, parasites can adapt and survive within pets that are not dewormed yet.

  • Not assuring your pup has swollen the medication when you give them orally

When administering oral medication, most puppies tend not to swallow pills. So you have to make sure that your puppy has swollen the pills. They can hide it inside their mouth and put the pill out in a minute or two. So make sure your pups don’t do that. This is a common thing for most dog breeds.

  • Medicating your pup on your own

Suppose you don’t know all the necessary information regarding “How to deworm a puppy”. In that case, it’s best if you get advice from a vet.

How to Deworm a Puppy


  • Is it okay to deworm a puppy at home?

If your puppy does not suffer from severe intestinal parasites and if you know how to deworm a puppy, then you can deworm your puppy at home. It’s also good to deworm a puppy when you first get them if the dog breeder hasn’t dewormed them properly.

  • How can I deworm my puppy naturally?

You can add fermented vinegar to your pup’s water. Consult with your vet to know the necessary amount for your pup. Chopped carrots, dried coconut, turmeric, chamomile, kefir also help eliminate harmful parasites in your pup’s system. You can add these things to your pup’s diet to naturally deworm your puppy. But if your pup’s condition is severe, you should use medication since natural deworming may take more time.

  • Should puppy eat before deworming?

Some deworm medication needs to be administered on an empty stomach. But the conditions are always on the label, so make sure you read the label carefully.

How to Deworm a Puppy

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