Do Reptiles Get Parasites Too?

Do reptiles get parasites too?

Cats and dogs tend to be the most common pets and therefore people know they can get parasitic infections. Well, reptiles can get parasites too. Some types of parasites can be fairly common in certain species of reptiles.

There are different type of parasite, some external, some internal. Many parasites can be very harmful and dangerous for a reptile. This article will discuss the different types of parasites that reptiles get.

The first type is worms or nematodes which can be roundworms, hookworms, or pinworms. Reptiles usually contract worm parasites from eating live prey that was infected. Being expected to wild-caught reptiles or sometimes plants or objects from the wild can introduce parasites into a pet reptile's home. Worms usually infect the intestinal tract of a reptile leaving them with symptoms such as weight loss, diarrhea and vomiting. Worms can be small or large. Some look like spaghetti. They are internal parasites, but they can sometimes be seen in a reptile's feces or vomit.

Ticks are another parasite. These are external parasites that attach to a reptile and fed on their blood. Ticks are small, but visible and they are flat, round, and usually a brown color. Ticks transmit diseases to reptiles. They can also cause anemia. You can remove a tick from a reptile if you find one. Just be sure to carefully remove its whole body starting with its head where it is attached to the reptile. If you just rip a tick off, it's jaw may remain in the reptile causing another infection. Use you remove a tick put it in rubbing alcohol to make sure it is dead.

Mites are another external parasite that reptiles get. Mite are smaller than ticks, but can usually be seen as small things moving around on a reptile. A reptile with mites will often rub up against things in its tank. Soaking your reptile in water can help kill mites. Putting olive oil on your reptile is another trick to killing mites. There are medications available for this type of parasite, but it is lethal for turtles.

The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your veterinarian or other health care professional. You should not use the information on this site for diagnosis or treatment of any health problem or for prescription of any medication or other treatment.