We have outdoors cats that eat a whole lot of mice, voles and shrews (and other animals) and with some regularity end up with white worm-like parasites of about 1cm length leaving their intestines and sticking to their fur until they get lost. Obviously, by that time a deworming is called for.

Now I wanted to identify the parasites in question in order to know what particular danger they pose to humans when left by cats somewhere. It's basically always this kind even for cats that have never met, the cats are common house cats, the location is Western Germany. What I found in Wikipedia does not differentiate according to commonality and I've not found a good image match either, possibly missing the right maturity stage.

Here is one exemplar (usually they are stretched a bit more, and they do move so I don't think it is a mere tapeworm tail segment but might be wrong):Dropped cat parasite on quilt

  • 1
    Looks like a tapeworm larva—with a small segment missing.
    – M.Mat
    Oct 28, 2019 at 3:34

1 Answer 1


This looks like a segment of a tapeworm. But to be absolutely honest, the identification of the worm is irrelevant for your question.

All of the common intestinal worms in central Europe can infect humans and other household pets.

If you notice any worm infection, put a sample of the stool into a tightly closable container (like an empty glass jar or a cleaned, empty food container) and bring it to your vet. The vet will identify the parasites and prescribe the correct medication.

As a general note: you should preventively deworm an outdoor cat at least every 3 - 6 months, even if you cannot see any worms. Intestinal worms weaken your cat long before you can see them, cause weight loss, shaggy fur and sometimes anemia. Some parasites cause health problems and organ damages but don't leave the body, so you won't see them. And as soon as you notice worms on the fur of your cat, they might as well be on the couch or even in your bed.

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