[catfilter] Should I give my cat worm meds from Amazon?
January 8, 2017 10:27 PM   Subscribe

Can I trust something called Drontal that I bought on Amazon to medicate my cats for what are clearly tapeworms? Pretty straightforward but a few deets under the fold.

The cats had fleas, so they got tapeworms, because that's apparently inevitable. They gave us meds for them and all of it got better. Fast forward a bit and the same thing happens, but we don't get all the fleas for a while and the cats have tapeworms again. It's unfortunately (grossly) not hard to spot.

At this point if I call the vet they're going to ask me to take them in, which I'd rather not do because 1) they hate the car and 2) it'll be an extra $65 or something for the office visit. I ordered this stuff Drontal (made by Bayer, but I think overseas) on Amazon, where it is very highly rated. A+++, would deworm again, or something. I'm not sure if it's exactly what the vet gave them before because I don't have the bill anymore.

So it seems pretty straightforward but I am psychotically devoted to my cats and would be devastated if I did something bad for them. Does this seem risky or fine? YANMV and stuff.
posted by Smearcase to Pets & Animals (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Why don't you call the vet and ask what they got before? My vet would be completely fine with a "hey, stupid tapeworms again-- can you remind me the name of the medicine?"
posted by frumiousb at 10:43 PM on January 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

Call the vet and ask if they will sell you the drontal based on the previous visit (if you got them vaccinated in the past year, they should have current-enough weights for the cats).

If you can weigh your cats to confirm that they are still the same weight, that would help a little. If they're adult cats, I don't think it would make _that_ much difference.

I am not a vet, just someone who used to hang out with the local "it's just dewormer, it's fine" kitten rescue lady. The same one who got super upset when kittens with diarrhea weren't bathed and treated with soothing ointment. She was super picky about some things, not about others.

She may have been using different dewormer; use your brain, don't just do what I say.
posted by amtho at 10:54 PM on January 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

For tapeworms, you need praziquantel as the active ingredient. You can indeed get this on Amazon - I successfully treated my feral rescue kittens with it a few years back. Going to the vet is a good idea in general, especially if there is any question in your mind as to what you are dealing with, but if you are really sure it's tapeworms and not roundworms, you definitely need praziquantel (often sold as "Tape Worm Tabs"). Roundworms are the skinny ones that curl up; tapeworms look like grains of rice at first, and then like sesame seeds when they dry.
posted by aecorwin at 11:13 PM on January 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

I'm not sure if this helps, but the Drontal brand is a household name in Australia. (I don't and never have had cats - I presume that they have advertised on TV at some point.)
posted by Cheese Monster at 11:35 PM on January 8, 2017 [2 favorites]

Drontal is a trusted brand, as long as its not fake and your cat is healthy and not on other medication it's fine I'd imagine. And the broad spectrum will kill tapeworms, as well as everything else. If you're concerned about the seller, you can buy it elsewhere too.

I worm my dog with wormer I buy on Amazon because it's much cheaper.
posted by fshgrl at 11:48 PM on January 8, 2017 [1 favorite]

Unless something has changed recently, you can by tapeworm medicine OTC at Petsmart (and probably other supply stores).
posted by Violet Hour at 1:44 AM on January 9, 2017

Just chiming in that Drontal is a household brand for cat worming treatments here in the UK too.
posted by A Robot Ninja at 3:00 AM on January 9, 2017 [1 favorite]

Drontral is the default brand here in Ireland. I wouldn't think twice about this.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:05 AM on January 9, 2017

Seconding the person who said praziquantal. My pup has an extremely rare and very hard to kill tapeworm called a mesocestoid. We have been through so many wormers and praziquantal is the only thing that keeps it at bay. Here's the thing about tapeworm: you see proglottids in the feces, not fully formed worms. Unless you kill every last bit of the worm that is in your cat, you will have a recurring problem. Drontal (pyrantal) works fast but it is not always as effective at killing the whole worm. Bring in a fecal to your vet and ask about praziquantal or fenbendazole (aka panacur).
posted by donut_princess at 5:44 AM on January 9, 2017

I just ordered some from 1800petmeds, because I was a little hesitant to try the stuff from Amazon. I'm glad to know it's legit in case I go through this again.

I took my Max in Saturday (literally dragged him kicking and screaming in his carrier) and they gave me two Drontal pills to administer myself. It did not go well. They dissolved in his food, which he then refused to eat. So I ordered more online, and will grind them up this time and try a different method (cheezez). It will be nice to not scream in horror when I catch him curled up on my pillow, dropping little sesame-seed worm segments everywhere. Poor baby.
posted by jhope71 at 10:49 AM on January 9, 2017

Broad spectrum Drontal has praziquantal in it guys.
posted by fshgrl at 10:52 AM on January 9, 2017 [1 favorite]

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