It not exactly the nicest subject in the world, but at some point in their lives chances are that your dog may get worms and so it is essential that all owners know how to prevent this situation and how to act when worms strike.

Puppies are at particular risk of worms and when infected can become seriously ill if the problem is not dealt with quickly.

Worms are passed down to young puppies from their mother before birth and from her milk when nursing. Therefore, the key to preventing worms in young pups is to make sure that the mother dog is wormed at the time of mating and again when her litter is one week old.

However, if you have no control over this and have bought a puppy from a breeder, you will need to make sure your pup is wormed once you've brought them home. According to the Dogs Trust, after 12 weeks, puppies should be wormed once a month until they are six months old.

Then dogs should be wormed at least three times a year for the rest of their lives, although you should always speak to your vet if you're unsure what is best for your pooch.

Preventative worming medicine often comes in a form that can be mixed with their premium dog food so most pups will be more than happy to receive their treatment.

It's also important to make sure that your dog lives in a clean and hygienic environment as this will help prevent the spread of worms. In particular, make sure all bedding is washed on a regular basis and that you always clear up any faeces from the garden or wherever you walk your four-legged friend.

And although many dogs will not display signs of worms, it's worth being aware of the symptoms, which include weight loss, vomiting, diarrhoea and a swollen abdomen.

Written by: Hannah