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Dog Health

Some of the most common questions on the Squirrel Dog Message Board revolve around what livestock medications work well for dogs. These medications are often much more economical than the products prescribed by your vet.

According to many vets, there are significant risks to using the products below on dogs. Part of that warning probably comes from serious cases where dogs were mis-dosed using these products. If you only have a dog or two and can afford to use products like Advantage - please do so. If you have too many dogs and too little money for that you might try the following medications - AT YOUR OWN RISK! End of sermon - JoeM

If you have a remedy please send it in.

Heartworm Preventative and some other Parasites such as mites and fleas:

Ivomec     information from a Vet

Ivomec for Cattle 1 % solution--------1/10 cc per 10 lbs. of dog weight. (Reddog)

Ivomec for pigs .27% solution-------- 1/2cc per 10 lbs. dog weight my personal preference.....easier to measure out and less likely to make a mistake.

Given once a month.


Method to administer:

I mix it with a small amount of milk and let them drink it. Some people use it under the skin but I just find it easier to give by letting them drink it. There seems to be no difference if given either way. (Reddog)

New Treatment for Heartworm

Heartworm treatment should be much safer for dogs now that a new medication, Immiticide (rx), is available to veterinarians. This medication has fewer side effects and kills a higher percentage of heartworms than Caparsolate (rx), which has been the only medication available until now.

Heartworms live in the heart and the large blood vessels which go to the lungs from the heart. When they are killed by medications, a danger of embolism results if the dead worms block the flow of blood to the lungs. This is a common cause of death during a heartworm treatment. This risk still exists with Immiticide, but to a much lesser extent, due to differences in the timing of heartworm deaths. In addition, Immiticide does not appear to damage the liver or kidneys, which was sometimes a problem with Caparsolate.

If your dog has heartworm disease and you have been putting off treatment due to the higher risk of complications associated with Caparsolate, it would be a good idea to call your vet and discuss this new treatment. Dog feel better after heartworm treatment and their expected life span is the same as a dog that was not affected with this parasite if treatment is successful. Even though there is a small risk of death during treatment, it is still usually a much better choice than not treating for heartworms. (Reddog)


Ear Mites:

The gestation period for the mite is 21 days so do your treatment every other day for 21 days. Mix a 1/2 bottle of rubbing alcohol with a bottle of iodine and put 1 1/2 cc of 1% Ivomec for cattle. Put 1/2 cc of mixture in each ear. (Mark Allen)

Other Worms:

I use Panacur or Safeguard it is exactly the same thing....10 % fenbendazole is the active ingredient
I use the amount for 125 lbs. of horse weight for each dog for 3 days in a row - 5 days in a row will get some tape worms. (Reddog)

Tape worms:

I use Adams No-Mo for tapeworms. It is the best for tapeworms that I have found. Adams has an ad in Full Cry. (Reddog)

Tick and Flea Preventative:

I use Spotton made by Bayer
Dosage 3/4 cc between the shoulder blades every 35-40 days. I use the same amount for dogs 25-40 lbs. you might want to cut that down 1/4cc for dogs under 25 lbs. *** Be very careful not to overdose this product - it can seriously harm a dog and avoid contact with your skin! (Reddog)

Cedar Chip Bedding Seems To Help also for Flea Control. (Reddog)

Pup Worming:

Starting at 2 weeks old worm the pups every 2 weeks with Nemex2...... 1 tsp. per 10 lbs. of weight. (Reddog)

Worming the Bitch:

Try to worm the bitch with Panacur before she is bred or right after she is bred....this will cut down on the amount of worms the pups might have. Also worm her with Nemex2... 2 weeks after the pups are born. (Reddog)


I use the 7 way shots (DA2PP+CVK) for the pups according to the manufacturers recommendations starting at 8 weeks and then again at 12 weeks. At 16 weeks I give them the 8 way shot (DA2PP+CVK/LCI) and again at 6 months old. Yearly after that. (Reddog)

If you pup has to be taken off the bitch earlier than 8 weeks you may want to give a 7 way shot earlier than 8 weeks. (JoeM)

Hi my name is Scott I am a veterinary student at Texas A&M. I was reading some of your info in vaccines and thought I'd up-date you a little. The only shots required for dogs are @ 8, 12, & 16 wks distemper/parvo and rabies at 16 wks. These same vaccines should be given again at 1 yr. From that point on the rabies if given a 3yr vaccine need only be given every 3 yrs. The distemper/parvo creates a 7-9 yr immunity if given as a puppy so adults should not be given distemper/parvo again until age 8yr, but even at this point they my not need it. I know its hard not to vaccinate every year, but over vaccination is more dangerous than not vaccinating at all.



The easiest and most inexpensive treatment to kill the mites on dogs that are kept outdoors, and heal minor bacterial infections is a two part treatment. First, bathe the mange infected dog with an inexpensive dog shampoo or dishwashing liquid detergent while using a firm, bristle brush to scrub off any scabs or scaly skin. Second, dip a rag in used automobile motor oil and generously apply the oil to the infected area along with the surrounding hair. DO NOT get the oil in the dogs ears or eyes. This treatment will kill the mites that are causing the hair loss/bacterial skin infections, is safe to use on your dog, and the used motor oil acts as a moisturizer to help stop itching. This treatment will work in 98% of all mange infected animals, especially those without any major bacterial skin infections. (Reddog)

Hot Spots

Plain old sulfur powder, bought at a feed store, works great on hot spots rashes or any type of skin condition that needs to be dried up. It will also keep ticks away from the kennel when sprinkled on the ground around the kennel.

Spirocerca lupi

by Holly Frisby, DVM

Drs. Foster & Smith
Veterinary Services Department

Spirocerca lives in the esophagus and stomach and can cause cancer of the esophagus and severe damage to large blood vessels. It is widely distributed in the southern United States, and infects dogs, fox, wolves, and lynx. The adult worm is red in color and approximately 3 inches long. The eggs, which contain larvae, have the shape of a paper clip.

What is the life cycle of Spirocerca lupi?
The adult worm lives within nodules in the esophagus and stomach. The eggs it lays contain larvae, which are eaten by beetles. Inside the beetles the eggs hatch and the larvae develop into more mature forms. A dog can become infected by eating the beetle, or eating an animal that ate a beetle. (That's a tongue twister.) Inside the dog, the larva is released and enters the blood vessels and winds its way to the aorta (the large artery carrying blood to the body). It finally migrates from the aorta to the esophagus, and possibly the stomach, completing the life cycle. (The aorta and esophagus lie next to each other in the animal's chest.)

What damage is caused by esophageal worms?
The nodules in infected animals can interfere with swallowing, and if nodules occur in the stomach, vomiting can be seen. The animal may lose its appetite and weight loss can result. Nodules that put pressure on the airways in the chest can cause difficult breathing. Nodules can also put pressure on the blood vessels in the chest, affecting blood circulation. If an adult worm stays in the aorta, the nodule that forms around it could cause an aneurysm (dilation) of the aorta to develop. If the aneurysm would rupture, death would follow quickly.

Nodules caused by Spirocerca lupi can develop into cancer that can spread to other organs. An unusual sign of infection with the esophageal worm is abnormal bony changes and swelling of the legs of the animal. This is called hypertrophic osteopathy. The exact mechanism by which this occurs is unknown, but it is seen when there are tumors or other masses in the chest. Hypertrophic osteopathy may be observed before any digestive or respiratory signs of Spirocerca lupi infection are seen.

Abnormal changes of the vertebrae (bones in the back) may also occur.

How is infection with Spirocerca lupi diagnosed?
Eggs of Spirocerca lupi can be found in the feces or vomit, but sometimes it takes repeat examinations since the worms are not continually releasing eggs. An endoscopic exam of the esophagus will reveal the characteristic nodules. Signs of hypertrophic osteopathy may signal your veterinarian to look for tumors or other masses in the chest. The nodules caused by the esophageal worm can be seen on radiographs (x-rays).

Is there an effective treatment for infection with Spirocerca lupi?
A drug called disophenol has been shown to be effective in treating this condition. The hypertrophic osteopathy will resolve with treatment. Sometimes, however, irreversible damage, such as an aneurysm or cancer has occurred, and can not be treated effectively.

What measures can be taken to prevent infection with the esophageal worm?
Exposure to feces and vomit must be eliminated. Dogs should not be allowed to eat animals that may be transport hosts (animals that may have eaten infected beetles, such as chickens, frogs and rodents). Chickens, especially, have been shown to be an important source of infection in the southern United States. Dogs should not be allowed to eat raw chicken or entrails.



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