Giardia is a single-celled parasite that lives in your pets intestine. Giardia does infect older pets more frequently infects our young pets. Dog’s and cat’s become infected when they swallow the parasite that may be present in standing water or other substances that may have been soiled with feces.
How does Giardia affect my pet?
Most pets infected do not get any disease. If they do it usually results in diarrhea. Having giardia for a long time can result in weight loss; poor condition; and even be fatal.
The best way to prevent giardia is to make sure your pet has clean drinking water. Never allow your pet to drink water from areas where other animal could have left or tracked feces. The giardia infection can be prevented by keeping your pet’s living area and the environment clean. Remove feces on a regular basis.
Giardia can potentially infect people. Due to their behavior, young children are at great risk, but immunosuppressed, elderly, and pregnant women are also at risk. Having regular fecal examinations performed on your pet and treating when indicated can help minimize the chances of human transmission.