Tapeworms are one of the most common diseases that affect dogs. Tapeworms are intestinal parasites that have a head, neck and some segments attached to them. The most common cause of tapeworms in dogs is the consumption of flea-carrying tapeworm eggs. Once in the dog's body, the tapeworms begin to thrive and attach themselves to the dog's digestive system. The average tapeworm can grow to up to 8 inches (20 centimeters) long. As the tapeworm lives and thrives in the dog's digestive system, it gobbles up all the nutrients from the food that the dog eats. Once the tapeworm is fully mature, its tail end detaches itself from the body and comes out in the dog's stool. Some of the symptoms of a tapeworm infection are weight loss, diarrhea, vomiting and lack of energy [source: Nash]. Diagnosing tapeworms in dogs is not difficult and neither is treating them. You can either take your dog to the veterinarian to receive medication, or you can try one or more of the following home remedies.
- Garlic Garlic is one of the best home remedies for treating tapeworms in dogs. The sulfur compounds and volatile oils found in garlic help eliminate the tapeworms from the dog's body. Mix garlic powder into your dog's food for 2 to 3 weeks and you will see a marked improvement in your dog's health.
- Pumpkin seeds Pumpkin seeds can also be a very effective cure. Grind up whole, raw pumpkin seeds and feed them to your dog before every meal. Depending on the size of your dog, you can feed him anywhere between ¼ teaspoon and 1 teaspoon of pumpkin seeds.
- Wheat germ oil You can add 1 teaspoon of wheat germ oil to your dog's meal.
- Oregon grape juice Feed your dog six drops of Oregon grape juice for every 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms) of body weight, twice a day [source: Natural Dog Health].