Interview with Dr. Tamara Gull
Intestinal parasites can cause serious health problems for animals and have a big economic impact on meat production. De-wormers are drugs designed to help kill parasitic worms, but much like antibiotic resistance, dewormer resistance is becoming a real problem. While most will agree it is a good idea to remove these worms from our food animals, such as goats and sheep, we are now realizing that the indiscriminate use of dewormers is leading to the development of resistant worm populations. The practice of routinely deworming all of the animals in a herd, whether they need it or not, can actually increase the presence of parasitic worms that are resistant to the drugs we use most. By treating animals on an individual basis, we are able to detect and treat those animals that are truly in need, and avoid the misuse of these dewormers that leads to their ineffectiveness. Understanding the life cycle of parasites is crucial to reducing their presence within a herd. Consult your veterinarian to determine what’s best for the health of your animals.