A dull coat, diarrhea, vomiting, tiny rice grains in the feces… Oh no, it seems like your cat has worms!
This is a least favorite scenario for every cat parent, still, luckily, deworming can solve the issue. But, how long will it take for your cat to be warms-free?
This will depend on every individual cat and on the type of worms she is struggling with. Still, there is some approximate time the worms should be gone.
Even if it will take a bit longer for your cat, don’t worry – deworming will solve the issue, but this might not come overnight.
Worms Should Be Gone Between 3 Days To Three Weeks
You know deworming will help your kitten get rid of those nasty worms. But, it has been several days since the deworming, and you don’t see any changes?
Just be patient. Worms in cats should be gone from 3 days to up to 3 weeks after deworming.
So, don’t panic and count the days nervously. Worms are unpleasant for cats and their owners, but they will be gone eventually.
Still, there are some factors you should consider when predicting how long your kitten will be completely free of worms, and to see her in her good old mood.
3 Factors Cat’s Deworming Depends On
As soon as you notice symptoms that might indicate worms in your cat, you should consult your vet.
He will prescribe the best type of anthelmintic for your pet. Depending on several factors, the time this product cleans worms out of your cat’s body might be different. Let’s take a look at those factors.
Cat’s General Health
Your kitty is young, healthy and active, and hasn’t struggled with any serious medical conditions so far?
Chances are you will notice deworming effects in just a couple of days! Strong and healthy cats are more likely to be worms-free sooner.
On the other hand, cats with weakened immune systems, and ones that have some additional diseases, might recover from worms for a longer period of time.
There are more types of worms that most commonly affect cats. Felines might get rid of some worm types fast, while some others might bother them longer.
According to Cornell Feline Health Center, roundworms are the most common type of worms in cats, with an estimated prevalence of 25% to 75%.
Roundworms will not usually cause serious consequences in adult, healthy cats, but a large number of these worms might be life-threatening for kittens and older felines.
This type of worm is most commonly transmitted to kittens from their mothers’ milk. Adult cats might get roundworms by eating a wild animal, or from another animal’s infected feces.
A cat should be roundworms-free up to three weeks after deworming.
Besides roundworms, the second type of intestinal parasites that often affect cats are tapeworms.
Many cat owners will notice white specks on their cat’s feces – according to the cat’s poop color chart, this is a sign of tapeworm infestation.
To get tapeworms, a cat needs to ingest a flea, which is an intermediate host for tapeworms.
In rare cases tapeworms might cause weight loss – if these worms are present in large numbers. Tapeworms will mostly not be particularly harmful for a cat. After the deworming, the cat should be completely free of worms in three days.
The Dewormer Type
You might opt to use home remedies for worms in your cat, but, I strongly recommend to advise your vet on the type of dewormer you should use.
Today we have a wide range of products used for deworming in cats. Not every product will suit all the cats the same; some of them might even become immune to some product over the time!
But – this is precisely why there are so many dewormer types available. Your vet will advise you pills or drops you should use on your cat, and will recommend the dosage depending on your pet’s weight.
I understand many of you worry that frequent deworming will cause side effects in your cat. But this is why we, the veterinarians, are here! We will check what product is safe for your kitty, and ensure you will not give too much of the product to her.
You need to be aware that using a home remedy for worms – such as garlic, chamomile, or pumpkin seed – is not a guarantee your cat will soon be free of worms.
A study published in the Veterinary Evidence Journal  found that garlic is not an effective anthelmintic for use in dogs and cats – either to prevent, or to treat worms.
Therefore, the better idea is always to consult your vet, rather than deciding on the medication on your own, and potentially harm your pet.
Time Passes, But Worms Are Not Gone
It has been more than 3 weeks since you started with the deworming, but your cat doesn’t seem to be worms-free?
You are probably blaming the dewormer and thinking how your vet prescribed a bad product.
Well, there is a chance your cat got reinfected! So, there is nothing wrong with the product, but, rather, you might not have been careful enough.
How is this possible?
Maybe you have not isolated your cat from other animals inside your home – animals that might have worms as well.
Also, if your cat has access to the outdoors, perhaps she went hunting, and picked up worms once again.
If this is the case, your cat will need to receive a second round of deworming medication.
Sounds like a vicious circle, right? You think you got your cat worms-free, and then she goes and gets them again!
Well, your kitty’s recovery will depend on you, too. After you start giving your cat deworming medicine, isolate her from other animals and people for the next couple of days (or even weeks if necessary).
Also, keep your cat’s surroundings clean and change her litter daily.
How Often Should You Deworm Your Cat In General?
You found out your friend deworms her cat more often than you do with yours, and this got you worried?
You shouldn’t worry, since deworming frequency will depend on every individual cat, her age, and her life circumstances.
Kittens old 3 to 8 weeks should be dewormed every 2 weeks. After this period, they should be dewormed once a month until they reach 6 months of age.
Adult cats will not need deworming as often as kittens.
If you have an indoor cat, she is less exposed to worms infestation. Still, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t deworm her at all! The recommended frequency for indoor cats is once every three months.
If you don’t want to deworm your cat too often, you can have her feces tested, and treat it according to findings.
Things are different for cats that are free to roam.
According to the ESCCAP guide for worm control in dogs and cats, cats that spend most of their time outdoors, and the ones that share home with young children, or immunocompromised individuals, should be dewormed once a month.
In The End
Worms are something all pet parents wish they will never have to deal with.
Unfortunately, every cat is likely to struggle with them at least once in her lifetime; luckily, deworming will help her get rid of these unwanted tenants.
Some cats will be worms-free in 3 days, while for some it might take up to 3 weeks to fully recover. Some might even need to have a second round of deworming medications.
So, worms are tiring, but definitely not insoluble!
For all cat parents who are currently dealing with worms in their furry friends, we have some advice on how to clean your house. See you there!
 Buckley, L: Is There Any Evidence to Support the Use of Garlic as a Wormer for Dogs and Cats in the UK? Veterinary Evidence, 4(2) DOI, Retrieved March 27, 2023.
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