Although Colorado has a climate that doesn’t encourage pet parasites as much as climates in the South, it’s still critical to protect your cat and dog from parasites. Cats and dogs in Colorado can harbor heartworm, ticks, and fleas, just like pets in other areas of the nation.

Common parasites found in our state include Giardia, roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, tapeworms, ​mange mites, Toxoplasma gondii, and coccidia. While heartworm exposure, fleas, and some ticks are more common in the summer, others like roundworms are important year-round.

Pets can spread some of the parasites to each other and to human members of your family. If your pet is interacting with pets from another household, be extra vigilant in your parasite control routine.

Ask your veterinarian about vaccines and the most appropriate parasite control for your pet. Talk to your veterinarian at least once a year if your pet is healthy, and as often as needed if your pet is ill. Parasite control needs to be administered on a maintenance schedule recommended by your veterinarian.

National guidelines for parasite control are offered by the Companion Animal Parasite Council. Your veterinarian will help you design an optimal program for your four-legged friends in Colorado.