The Best Cat Dewormer of 2024

Veterinary specialist Karie Johnson, DVM, of the south suburbs of Chicago, who specializes in end-of-life care, behavior, nutrition, and osteoarthritis, reviewed this material medically. The American Veterinary Association Journal publishes her work.

Best Cat Dewormer

Not only is it repulsive to find worms in your cat’s feces, but it also indicates that your cat needs your assistance. Regretfully, cats who have access to the outdoors are far too likely to have worms. But indoor cats can also contract worms.

That means your cat has worms. What’s next, an expensive trip to the vet? Here are five excellent methods for deworming your cat without a visit from a veterinarian if you’re concerned about future medical expenses, your cat truly detests the vet, or you don’t have one nearby.

We chose the items for this guide taking into account factors like safety, effectiveness, quantity of parasites targeted, and convenience of use. Regarding the prevention and treatment of intestinal parasites in cats, we also conferred with veterinarians. Drontal for cats is our number-one choice for the best cat dewormer since it kills more worms than any other drug.

Worms, often known as intestinal parasites, live inside your cat and do damage without being noticed. Cats frequently contract roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms as intestinal parasites. Certain worms, such as hookworms and roundworms, can potentially infect people. Before giving your cat a dewormer, take them to the clinic for a fecal test. various medications kill various kinds of worms. Moreover, your veterinarian must write a prescription for the dewormers we suggest. Once the type of worms your cat has been identified by your veterinarian, you can treat it with one of the following methods.

Our top picks for the best cat dewormers

  1. Best broad-spectrum: Drontal Dewormer – See at PCH
  2. Best oral tapeworm dewormer: Droncit Tablets – See at Chewy
  3. Best topical tapeworm dewormer: Centragard Topical Solution for Cats – See at Petsmart
  4. Best oral parasite preventive: Interceptor Flavor Tabs – See at Chewy
  5. Best topical parasite preventive: Revolution Plus Topical Solution for Cats – See at Chewy

Best broad-spectrum

Drontal Broad Spectrum Dewormer

With the help of Bayer Drontal Broad Spectrum Dewormer, intestinal parasites of the tapeworm, hookworm, and roundworm species can be successfully eradicated.

Shop at PCH

What we like

  • Safe and reliable
  • Veterinarian recommended
  • Kills several types of worms
  • Low risk for side effects
  • Kills all parasites within seven days

What we don’t like

  • Not for kittens weighing less than two pounds or less than eight weeks old.
  • Can be buried in food, but if your cat has trouble swallowing pills, it might be challenging to give them to them.

A broad-spectrum dewormer can eradicate several parasite species simultaneously. Because Bayer Drontal Broad Spectrum Dewormer is safe, efficient, and gets rid of all parasites in seven days, we suggest using it. Drontal is the only cat dewormer that kills as many distinct kinds of worms. The two potent active ingredients in this dewormer, praziquantel, and pyrantel pamoate combined effectively treat roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms.

Give your cat the tablet by pushing it far back in their mouth until they swallow it, or break it up and incorporate it into a tiny bit of moist food. Drontal is safe for kittens and cats older than 8 weeks and weighing between 2 and 16 pounds. It also carries a very minimal risk of negative effects.

Your veterinarian needs to write a prescription for Bayer Drontal Broad Spectrum Dewormer. Cats sometimes have other parasites that even broad-spectrum dewormers can’t get rid of, so don’t skip this step.

Your cat could need one or more follow-up treatments after taking a broad-spectrum dewormer like Drontal to ensure that all the worms are removed. One of the best flea treatments for cats should be used if your cat has fleas to stop future tapeworm infections.

Best topical tapeworm dewormer

Centragard Topical Solution for Cats

When monthly, Centragard Topical Solution treats hookworms, roundworms, and tapeworms in cats in a fast and safe manner while also preventing heartworms.

What we like

  • Removes tapeworms in a single dosage
  • Simple topical medication administration
  • Treats and guards against hookworms and roundworms
  • Gives protection against heartworms every thirty days.

What we don’t like

  • Not for kittens who weigh less than 1.8 pounds or are younger than 7 weeks.
  • Do not use it on cats that are nursing or pregnant.

In cats and kittens 7 weeks of age and older, Centragard effectively and safely treats intestinal parasites, including roundworms and hookworms. If your cat refuses to take medicines, this is an excellent alternative. Just press the liquid into a single area on your cat’s nape and let it air dry. Centragard can be administered monthly to prevent lethal heartworms in cats and to cure infestations of tapeworms, hookworms, or roundworms. It can also be used once to treat an infestation of any of these parasites.

The active components of Centragard, praziquantel, and eprinomectin, eradicate worms and shield the body from further infections. These components work well against heartworms, two species of hookworms (Ancylostoma tubaeforme and Ancylostoma braziliense), one species of roundworm (Toxocara cati), and the two most common species of tapeworms (Dipylidium caninum and Taenia taeniaeformis).

Treating your cat for fleas is also necessary to fully eradicate tapeworms since cats can re-infect themselves by consuming another flea.

Best topical parasite preventive

Revolution Plus Topical Solution for Cats

Revolution Plus Topical Solution cures, controls, and prevents more parasites than any other topical treatment, including roundworms, hookworms, heartworms, fleas, ticks, and mites. It is safe for use in kittens as young as 8 weeks.

What we like

  • Easy to administer
  • Once-monthly treatment
  • Kills and prevents six types of parasites

What we don’t like

  • Does not kill tapeworms
  • Cats having a history of neurological conditions should use caution.
  • Not recommended for usage in cats that are breeding, pregnant, or nursing.

Revolution Plus Topical Solution is our choice for the best topical parasite preventative because it offers the greatest protection against six distinct parasites, more than any other topical preventive. Because Revolution Plus is safe for kittens 8 weeks and older, it outperformed Bravecto Plus Topical Solution, the other topical preventative we looked at. Kittens under six months old should not use Bravecto. Bravecto does not eradicate ear mites, however Revolution Plus does.

Roundworms and hookworms are two intestinal worms that Revolution Plus cures and manages. In addition, it cures and controls ear mites, three different tick species (the black-legged or deer tick, the Gulf Coast tick, and the American dog tick), and prevents heartworm disease. It also kills adult fleas before they can lay eggs. It does not kill tapeworms.

This monthly spot-on treatment is easy to apply to your cat’s skin in the space between its shoulder blades in one location, once per thirty days. A tiny amount of liquid medication is absorbed via the skin and immediately dries, leaving no trace. Unlike Advantage Multi and Bravecto, which require gloves for application, Revolution Plus does not require them, and you can handle your cat after application—even if the product hasn’t dried entirely. Just give your hands a quick wash with soap and water if any of the medication gets on them.

Speak with your veterinarian before deciding on a broad-spectrum parasite preventive for your cat. They may offer you advice on what could be best based on your cat’s lifestyle and the parasites that are most prevalent in your area.

To acquire Revolution Plus, you will need a prescription from your veterinarian. Your cat requires a heartworm test before beginning this medicine and then once a year thereafter, just like with other heartworm drugs. When using Revolution Plus in cats who have a history of neurologic conditions like seizures, caution should be used.

Best oral parasite preventive

Interceptor Flavor Tabs

Interceptor Flavor Tabs, when taken once a month, treat and manage adult whipworms, adult hookworms, and roundworms in addition to preventing heartworms.

What we like

  • Prevents heartworms
  • Adult whipworms, adult hookworms, and roundworms.
  • A flavored pill that’s easy to administer
  • provides thirty days of protection.
  • safe for kittens as early as six weeks

What we don’t like

  • Some cats can be challenging to give oral medication to.
  • Some cats find the flavor unpleasant.
  • lacks defense against fleas, which are the carriers of tapeworms.

Because interceptor protects against so many parasites, it’s an excellent option for pet owners who would want to provide an oral preventive rather than a topical medication. With the active component milbemycin oxime, Interceptor Flavor Tabs cure and manage adult whipworms, adult hookworms, and roundworms in addition to preventing dangerous heartworm illness. With each pill, kittens as young as six weeks old can safely receive 30 days of protection.

Heartgard is the other chewable parasite preventative for cats; Interceptor is the only one available. Heartgard, in contrast to Interceptor, exclusively addresses and manages hookworms as an additional parasite in addition to heartworms.

An Interceptor Flavor Tab can be hidden in a tiny amount of moist food or given to your cat as a treat. To get an Interceptor, you will want a veterinarian’s prescription. Your cat needs a heartworm test before beginning this preventative and then once a year after that, just like with all heartworm treatments.

Best oral tapeworm dewormer

Droncit Tablet for Cats

Cats can take one Droncit tablet combined with food to swiftly and securely eradicate tapeworms.

What we like

  • Kills tapeworms within 24 hours
  • Single pills available for purchase
  • Easy-to-administer tablet
  • Affordable
  • Powerful active ingredient
  • Long-trusted brand name

What we don’t like

  • After taking medication, some cats may have diarrhea or salivation.
  • This is not for kittens younger than six weeks.

Droncit Tablets treats tapeworm infestations in cats and kittens six weeks of age and older in a timely and safe manner. Unlike the other tapeworm dewormers we considered, Bayer Tapeworm Dewormer Tablets, which are provided in a three-pack and at a somewhat higher cost per pill, are conveniently sold per pill.

The main component of each tablet, praziquantel, has a dosage of 23 milligrams and acts to paralyze and eradicate tapeworms in a day. With just one dose, this component effectively eradicates Taenia taeniaeformis and Dipylidium caninum, the two most prevalent types of tapeworms. Your cat can be given the tablet whole or broken up and combined with food.

Treating your cat for fleas is also necessary to fully eradicate tapeworms since cats can re-infect themselves by consuming another flea.

What to look for in cat dewormers

It’s crucial to visit the veterinarian before administering a dewormer to your cat. Always take your cat to the doctor for a physical checkup and fecal test, which determines the type of worms your cat has by examining the stool. This is especially important if you think your cat may be infested.

Generally speaking, if they have one parasite, they will have more than one, according to Cornwallis Road Veterinary Hospital physician Dr. Herman Jeffer. “If they have roundworms, it’s not uncommon to see tapeworms or other worms as well, or ‘non-worms’ like coccidia.”

While some single-celled microscopic parasites, such as Giardia and Coccidia, resemble intestinal parasites in their symptoms, they are not actual worms. They require different prescription medications to treat them — dewormers won’t help.

Even while certain dewormers don’t require a prescription, it’s still important to contact the veterinarian because different treatments work on different kinds of worms. Your veterinarian can also determine whether your cat has any other health issues that need to be taken care of.

Rolesville Veterinary Hospital’s Dr. Colleen Sawyer says, “It’s important to see your veterinarian so they can identify what parasites are present and then prescribe the appropriate deworming medication.” “Any hazards for human sickness, which is also parasite dependent, can be explained by your veterinarian.”

Depending on the type of worms found, your cat could also need extra deworming and a follow-up fecal check to make sure no parasites are left behind. Your veterinarian can also identify any other health issues that might be going on aside from intestinal parasites.

How we selected the best cat dewormers

My twenty years of experience writing and editing for pet and veterinary journals has given me a good understanding of intestinal parasites, including treatment and prevention. For eight years, I also assisted veterinarians in their clinics, where one of my responsibilities was testing feces to check for the presence of worms.

I sought input from two veterinarians for this guide to the best cat dewormers on treating and preventing intestinal parasites like roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms, as well as ectoparasites like fleas, ticks, and mites. While this information helped us choose the products, none of the products in this guide was particularly recommended by our specialists. I also made advantage of the Companion Animal Parasite Council, an independent nonprofit, and its short product reference guide. It includes a list of all the active components and applications for every small animal parasite control product that has been approved by the FDA and EPA.

Here are the main attributes I looked for:

  • Safety and effectiveness: For this guide, I only took into account dewormers and preventives that have received FDA or EPA approval. After that, we looked up the contents in these products in the Merck Veterinary Manual to make sure they were all recognized as safe and effective for usage in cats and kittens.
  • Number of parasites treated: Preventive products were generally scored higher the more parasites they covered.
  • Ease of use: Products that required more effort to use than a comparable product received a lower rating. Products that require the pet owner to use gloves to apply the treatment or that require children and other pets to be kept away from the treated animal for a predetermined time, for example, scored lower.

Types of worms and their signs and symptoms

Up to 45% of cats are thought to carry intestinal parasites at any given moment, according to vets at Cornell University veterinarians. Diarrhea, flatulence, and vomiting are some of the mild to moderate digestive symptoms that adult cats with parasite infestations may have. On the other hand, severe infestations, particularly in kittens, can cause malnourishment, anemia, weight loss, and stunted growth.

“Cats who have been in a feral environment, for instance, will come in. Their coats are brittle and disheveled, they are bloated and anemic, they have chronic diarrhea and vomiting, and they can get very unhappy, according to Jeffer. “Kittens can actually die from parasite infestations.”

Roundworms, tapeworms, and hookworms are a few of the most prevalent worms found in cats.

Roundworms: Roundworms are huge (3–6 inches), smooth, and round-bodied parasites that are frequently seen in cats, especially in kittens. It is possible that you won’t notice any symptoms, especially if your cat just has a few roundworms. Large worm populations can give kittens a potbellied look, induce vomiting or diarrhea, reduce appetite, dull coat, and stunted growth. Additionally, roundworms may be visible in your cat’s vomit or feces.

Tapeworms: Your cat may have a tapeworm infestation if you see something in their feces that looks like white rice grains or if you witness them biting or licking the region beneath their tail. When an adult flea that is infected is eaten by a cat, the cat gets tapeworms. Segments of the tapeworm break off as it grows and pass through your cat’s feces.

“Probably the most common kind of worm that pet owners are going to notice is a tapeworm,” Jeffers explains. “The cat might have other ailments that need to be addressed, so there are a lot of reasons to bring your cat to the vet to sort out which worm it is and to make sure there aren’t secondary issues that are resulting from that infection.”

Hookworms: Little worms Hookworms are parasites that absorb blood from the intestinal wall and are almost undetectable without the use of a microscope. The symptoms of hookworm infection in cats can include poor coat, anemia, and weight loss. Cats with hookworm infestations can also occasionally have viscous, black feces.

FAQs about Best Cat Dewormer

What is the best cat dewormer?

Sawyer typically gives priority to goods that prevent heartworm disease in addition to fleas. “Heartworm disease, although rare, is not treatable in cats and has a high fatality rate,” according to her. “Coverage for ticks, immature life stages of fleas, and intestinal parasites are also important, and fortunately now there are products available that protect against all the above.”

Are natural dewormers better for cats?

According to Jeffer, he seriously doubts the efficacy of natural deworming products. He makes the point that traditional dewormers, which are advised by veterinarians, are not only highly safe to use but also quite successful. “They’ve all been used over decades, and there are very few to no side effects associated with them,” according to him.

Can indoor cats get worms?

Heartworms, fleas, ticks, and intestinal parasites like roundworms and hookworms are most common in outdoor cats. But indoor cats also require prophylaxis against parasites. Cats that live indoors can still come into contact with external parasites, and fleas might enter the house on your clothing or from other pets. According to Jeffer, indoor cats are primarily at risk from heartworms. “Even one heartworm can potentially be fatal to a cat,” according to him. “Even if a couple of mosquitoes get into the house that happens to be carriers for heartworm disease, there’s a chance that an indoor-only cat can get heartworms and can actually die from it.”

Should you give cats parasite prevention medicine year-round?

For all cats, veterinarians advise broad-spectrum parasite prevention. While some cat owners believe their pets only require preventives in the spring and summer, physicians advise using a broad-spectrum parasite preventative on cats throughout the whole year. Depending on where you reside, different parasites may be active at different times of the year. Parasites can also become active earlier than anticipated, even during the winter. “It’s a little bit of a gamble, especially with climate change and the unpredictability of the weather in most areas of the country,” adds Jeffer.

All cats, indoor or outdoor, should be protected against lethal heartworms. Indoor-outdoor cats are particularly vulnerable to intestinal parasites such as whipworms, roundworms, and hookworms.

Parasites can enter your home through a variety of means, according to Sawyer. This also applies to other creatures, such as little rats or the household dog. Additionally, fleas from human clothing or shoes might carry into the house, and mosquitoes that spread heartworm illness can readily enter through open windows or doors.

What wormer kills all worms in cats?

Comprehensive dewormers come in a ton of fantastic over-the-counter solutions. Seek for a treatment for hookworms, tapeworms, and roundworms. These are the worms that infect cats the most frequently.

Is over-the-counter dewormer effective for cats?

Indeed! Thousands of satisfied customers have left good reviews on several over-the-counter cat products.

How can I deworm my cat without medicine?

Your cat will probably require medicine if it has worms. Nevertheless, you may treat your cat at home with several over-the-counter products, so a veterinarian visit is typically not required.

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