We all want the best for our pets but sometimes we’re working off the wrong information. Learn the truth about these 7 common cat parasite myths so you can give your feline friend the right care. 

cat parasite myths

Myth: Parasites are only a risk in summer 

Truth: Hot and humid weather can increase the risk of fleas and ticks but these parasites are very much a risk to your cat no matter what the season.  

Make sure to protect your cat with flea, tick and worming treatments all year round. 

Myth: My indoor cat is safe from parasites 

Truth: While any indoor pet will be less likely to pick up ticks and worms, an indoor lifestyle isn’t parasite-proof, so preventative treatments are still necessary.  

Parasites can still make their way into your home for example by hitching a ride on your shoes and clothing, in the soil of houseplants, or on the coats of your other pets. Parasites like fleas are incredibly resilient and can lay dormant in your environment for months before jumping onto a passing cat. 

Check the parasite threat level in your local area with PetWatch.  

Myth: A single product can protect my cat from all parasites 

Truth: As of late 2023, this is not a complete myth. NexGard Spectra Spot-on for Cats protects against all the preventable cat parasites of concern  in Australia: fleas, ticks, intestinal worms (including tapeworms), mites, and lungworm (read NexGard Spectra for Cats’ full coverage claims here) 

Most other cat parasite control products don’t cover all of these parasites (tapeworms or heartworm are often missed in combination products, and some products only protect against external parasites or worms). Luckily, they’re still highly effective, you just need to combine a couple of different products to fully protect your cat from all parasites of concern.  

It can be hard to understand which product is best for your cat, and which products work well together. That’s why we’ve developed our Flea, Tick and Worm Treatment Finder in collaboration with Greencross Vets so you can make sure you’re providing your cat with the right care. 

Don’t hesitate to ask your local Greencross Vets or Petbarn team members for more advice on which parasite control products are best for your cat. 

Try our Cat Flea, Tick and Worm Treatment Finder

Try our Cat Flea, Tick and Worm Treatment Finder

Myth: I can give my cat dog medication 

Truth: Though they’re just as adorable on the outside, cats and dogs process some medications differently, meaning that while one product may be perfectly safe for a dog, it could be lethal for a cat.  

It’s essential that you read all labels very carefully and only provide your pet with medication specified to their species, age and weight. 

If you accidentally give your cat a parasite prevention product made for dogs, call your closest Greencross Vets or emergency veterinarian for advice. 


Myth: My cat can’t have worms because I can’t see any 

Truth: Even if your cat has already contracted worms, you will often not see the worms themselves as they are living in your cat’s intestines. What you might notice are small, white worm segments or eggs in your cat’s faeces, although these are often microscopic and too small to spot with the naked human eye. 

Instead, look out for symptoms like bottom dragging, diarrhoea, vomiting and loss of appetite. Or better yet, prevent your cat from getting intestinal worms in the first place by ensuring they’re up to date on their worming treatment. 

Myth: My new kitten is too young to have contracted a parasite 

Truth: Kittens can contract intestinal worms such as roundworm and hookworm from their mother’s milk and some are even born with worms already. In addition, they are more vulnerable to parasites which is why you need to begin your cat’s parasite prevention program from a young age.  

Learn more about protecting your kitten from fleas, ticks and worms here. 

Myth: Humans can’t contract parasites from cats 

Truth: Many of the parasites that your cat is at risk of can also be spread to humans 

For example, some intestinal worms such as roundworm and hookworm can pass from cats to humans. Infected cats can produce droppings with worm eggs inside, so make sure you wash your hands after cleaning their litter box, and after playing with your cat as eggs can also cling to their coat.  

Fleas can be an issue due to their rapid multiplication. A few fleas on your cat can soon infest your entire home which is why it’s so necessary to provide your pet with parasite treatments. 

Now that you’re armed with the truth, you’re ready to get the jump on parasites in your area by providing your cat with the right treatments. Use our Flea, Tick and Worm Treatment Finder or speak to a friendly Petbarn team member to understand the parasite treatments that will best suit your cat.