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 Post subject: Hook/whip worms
PostPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2003 11:09 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 11:04 am
Posts: 1
I am looking for a method to get rid of these parasites in my yard. We foster rescue dogs and have several from time to time. I previously heard this discussed by Howard Garrett, but was not in need at the time.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 09, 2003 11:14 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 27, 2003 10:51 pm
Posts: 747
Location: Garland, Texas
Apply beneficial nematodes to the lawn, and supplement the feed with natural diatomaceous earth. There are several posts regarding both topics here on the forum as well as information on the Dirt Doctor's website. If you don't find what you are looking for, post here again with any specific questions.

Good luck.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2003 10:13 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2003 10:59 am
Posts: 277
The nematodes should help with the common variety of hookworms because they have a larval stage in the soil.

As for the whipworms, I'm not too sure that nematodes will be as effective because the soil stage really isn't a larval stage. The common whipworm varieties usually exist in the soil as eggs/embryonic eggs; the larvae hatch after the eggs are ingested. Whipworm eggs are fairly durable in the soil. Rather than trying to treat the soil, I think it would be better to manage the dogs' environment. If you can, I would consider restricting the area where the dogs defecate and keep it as clean as you can. If you can keep them on a hard or washable surface and then clean it frequently, that would seem like a good way to start. Something like concrete or possibly a plastic material that you could wash off might be good. The dogs become infected with whipworms by ingesting soil or fecal material that contains eggs that have been deposited in the feces of infected dogs. So, it should help to limit the dogs' exposure to infected material. That may mean not letting them sniff around infected material or sit/lie/walk on it (walking on it presents the same problem as walking on ethylene glycol antifreeze -- they ingest what's there when they groom their feet). So, if you could make them use a hard or washable surface for the toilet, you could hose it away, steam clean it, or clean it with something that would kill the eggs. It would be best if that hard surface was exposed to direct sunlight. I have some exotic ideas that involve solar energy applications, but they may not be appropriate. Even so, I think strong hot sun on a hard surface would be fairly harsh for the eggs.

I don't know if d-limonene, common detergent, vinegar, 10-20% acetic acid, stronger hydrogen peroxide, household ammonia, salt water, pinene cleaners, or the sort will kill whipworm eggs or how effectively they would kill them. Some or those "should" be "effective." They can be killed, but the question is whether the cure is worse than the curse. It's a lot easier in a controlled situation than in a native soil environment. I don't have ready access to information about the compositon of the whipworm egg coat, so I can't hazard a guess of what sort of benign treatments would be effective. It is fairly likely that a whipworm-infected dog has infected your yard to some extent.

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In theory, theory and practice are the same; in practice, they aren't -- lament of the synthetic lifestyle.


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 Post subject: Whip Worms
PostPosted: Fri Jun 18, 2004 5:09 pm 
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I have found that whip worms do not stay in an egg stage and then hatch after it has been eaten. I just found that my puppies have whip worm and none of our other animals have ever had this problem. The vet told me to put lime in the yard to kill what is out there and came to find they were crawling out of the yard on to the sidewalk in worm form with a tail. I am worried the lime is not going to be enough to solve this problem so now what?


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 Post subject: Re: Whip Worms
PostPosted: Sat Jun 19, 2004 10:23 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 06, 2003 10:59 am
Posts: 277
thesuperstitous wrote:
I have found that whip worms do not stay in an egg stage and then hatch after it has been eaten. I just found that my puppies have whip worm and none of our other animals have ever had this problem. The vet told me to put lime in the yard to kill what is out there and came to find they were crawling out of the yard on to the sidewalk in worm form with a tail. I am worried the lime is not going to be enough to solve this problem so now what?


If you're seeing matured canine whipworms crawling on the ground, your place probably will be crawling with parasitologists once they hear that. As I understand it, live mature Trichuris vulpis rarely if ever appear outside of the host, and they would remain alive for only a very short time after expulsion from the host. That species is pretty hard to see with the unaided eye (not longer than 1/2"), so either that is not what you are seeing on the ground or your situation is beyond the common experience. Regardless of what you see on the ground, if your dogs have whipworms (which aren't very easy to diagnose), the immediate focus is to eliminate them from the dogs before they further contaminate your yard. If you haven't already started treating the dogs, then I think you should do so right away. If they are confined to a hard surfaced area that you are cleaning often and thoroughly, then the contamination issue probably isn't as urgent. The lime is intended to function as a drying agent, which is the usual preferred method of attacking the eggs. It probably doesn't work unless the area is dry, so rain and irrigation will impede that process. (I imagine lots of things will kill live worms that appear in the garden environment, but we generally don't consider macroscopic worms that appear in the garden setting to be pests. It would be great if you could take close-up digital photos of what you are seeing and post them here so we could get a better view of the problem.)

The ordinary thinking is that whipworm eggs are quite difficult to destroy when they are in the soil environment, but I haven't seen reports on contaminated areas maintained with high intensity organic methods. One would hope that intense organic management would remedy the situation faster/better, but I'd want to see data specific to whipworms before accepting that conclusion. I have seen one reference indicating that temperatures over 104 F will kill the eggs (which reportedly can be viable for up to five years in the soil), so using clear plastic sheeting to solarize bare soil that is exposed to sunlight for a good part of the day might help. You probably are dealing with turf, which complicates the cleanup. The usual remedial suggestion is to replace the soil with clean dirt (or possibly to fill clean dirt on top of the existing surface). How deep probably depends on the type of soil and how much churning activity there is. Potentially anything that disturbs the topsoil or opens cracks could allow the eggs to work deeper, so I suppose earthworms and aeration could be counterproductive for that purpose (which seems to argue against some of the usual intensive organic methods). That prospect might help the argument for clear plastic solarization for bare ground. The deeper they are, the less the chance for infection--if they remain that deep. As an uneducated guess, I'd venture that eggs might penetrate 2-6 inches in untilled ground.

As for the dogs' treatment, I don't have any experience with whipworms using diatomaceous earth, wormwood, or the other herbal treatments commonly mentioned for internal parasites. Perhaps someone on the forum can pass along their experience with canine whipworms. On the pharmaceutical side, Drontal+ or Drontal AllWormer, the fenbendazole products, and Interceptor apparently are the common prescriptions. Ivermectin used in proper dosages apparently will work also, so that's one possible way to save money if you can dose it properly and if it is suitable for the age of puppies you have. I've noticed that Australian-sourced Drontal AllWormer often is available on eBay from U.S. sellers, and that could be one way to save some money there (be sure to check how long the normal shipping method will take--it probably would pay to opt for fast delivery). You can search the Web and Usenet for further information, and mind the dosages and suitability for puppies with any of the treatments. For me, the threat of (further) contamination would make fast elimination a high priority. As for the source of the puppies' infection, it isn't very hard for eggs from an afflicted dog to find their way into a yard, especially if the yard is unfenced. Whipworms aren't as prevalent as other worm parasites in the U.S., but a host can pick them up fairly easily if they are around. Good luck.

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In theory, theory and practice are the same; in practice, they aren't -- lament of the synthetic lifestyle.


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