The life cycle of most worms is such that the possibility of reinfestation is great. To keep worms under control, you must destroy the eggs and larvae before they reinfest the dog. This means good sanitation and maintaining clean, dry quarters.
Dogs should not be kenneled with dirt runs, which provide ideal conditions for seeding eggs and larvae. A watertight surface, such as cement, is the easiest to keep clean. Gravel is a good substitute. It provides effective drainage and allows for easy removal of stools. Hose down each kennel or run daily and allow it to dry in the sun.
Remove stools daily from runs and pens. Lawns should be cut short and watered only when necessary. Stools in the yard should be removed every day. Concrete and gravel surfaces can be disinfected with lime or salt. Lime is an alkaline corrosive, so hose down all pens after disinfecting with lime to prevent injury to dogs. Borax (1 ounce per 10 square feet, 30 ml per 1 square meter) is another good disinfectant.
Kennels in which the dogs have persistent problems with worms usually have other problems as well, including chronic skin diseases and recurrent respiratory infections. Steps must be taken to improve the management of the kennel, especially the sanitation.
Fleas, lice, cockroaches, beetles, water bugs, and rodents are intermediate hosts of tapeworms and ascarids. To control reinfestation, it is necessary to get rid of these pests (see Disinfecting the Premises).
Many intestinal parasites spend their larval stages in other animals and develop into adults only when the dog eats one of these animals. Preventing dogs from roaming and hunting will reduce their exposure to parasites, as well as toxic substances and poisons. Be sure to thoroughly cook all fresh meat before feeding it to your dog.
Heartworm preventives, such as Interceptor, also prevent and control ascarids, hookworms, and whipworms. Heartgard Plus controls ascarids and hookworms but not whipworms. These agents are given in low dosages. The beneficial effect lasts only as long as you give the medication.