Can anyone tell me what the actual prevalence of lungworm is in the UK? I've seen a lot of ads about it and wonder if parts of it is scaremongering, but then I have noticed a huge increase in the amount of slugs and snails with all the rain we've been having.
How likely is it that if my dog touches a slug or a slug's trail he will get lungworm? And can they catch it from frogs, too? My dogs do eat grass, what can I do to protect my them? Are there any more natural remedies I can use to prevent it?
Sarah Leswell, by email
Christine Bailey, Dogs Today, says
There certainly are an awful lot of slugs and snails about this year! I don't like to give my dogs chemical treatments unless absolutely necessary, so I've just sent off samples of my dogs' poo for testing. The company I used is called www.wormcount.com For just £6.50 per dog they send you a sample pot and a form to fill in your and your dog's details. Getting the sample in the pot is of course the worst part, disposable rubber gloves are a must! Stamp and send off the pack, and bingo, the very next day the results appear in your email inbox. Brilliant service, and in the case of my dogs no trace of any worm eggs at all, toxocara, tapeworm or lungworm. If I knew there was a problem I would obviously treat the dogs, but if not why subject them to chemical wormers and their potential side effects?