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Dogs + Infectious Diseases

  • Anaplasmosis is a tick-borne disease caused by the infectious bacterial organism Anaplasma phagocytophilum. It is transmitted through bites of the deer tick (also known as the black-legged tick) and the Western black-legged tick. A lesser form of anaplasmosis is caused by Anaplasma platys and is transmitted by the brown dog tick. Dogs with anaplasmosis often have many of the same symptoms as those with Lyme disease, and infection with both agents (co-infection) is not uncommon.

  • Anthrax is a bacterial infection that can affect dogs if exposed to large amounts of bacterial-produced spores such as by terrorist attack or ingesting large quantities from infected meat. The organism that causes anthrax, Bacillus anthracis, produces spores that are resistant to typical disinfection methods and heat. These spores can last up to 40 years in the environment. Anthrax is usually spread through inhalation or ingestion of spores from infected meat, although cutaneous exposure can occur. Symptoms depend on the type of exposure and can include: black skin pustules, pneumonia, acute gastroenteritis with hemorrhagic vomiting and diarrhea, oral ulcerations, fever, weight loss, swelling of the neck, face and head and ultimately sepsis and death if not treated. Treatment requires antibiotics and can be highly effective in early stages. There currently is no canine vaccine.

  • Antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections are bacterial infections that are minimally or no longer responsive to commonly used antibiotics. Although these bacterial infections occur naturally, the frequent and/or inappropriate use of antibiotics accelerates the process. Dogs with certain medical conditions may also be predisposed.

  • Primary vaccination is essential to prevent the once common deadly diseases in puppies. However, recent research indicates that not all vaccines require yearly boosters. There is no evidence that annual booster vaccination is anything but beneficial to most dogs. Published research has shown conclusively that abstaining from some boosters can put your dog at risk.

  • This handout discusses aspergillosis in dogs, an infection, growth, or allergic response caused by the Aspergillus fungus. If your dog becomes infected, it can be confined to the nasal passages (nasal aspergillosis), or it can spread throughout the body (systemic aspergillosis). The clinical signs, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of both conditions are outlined.

  • Atovaquone is given by mouth and is used off-label to treat protozoal infections. Give as directed. Side effects are uncommon but may include stomach upset or skin rash. Do not use in pets that are pregnant. If a negative reaction occurs, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.

  • Babesiosis is a tick-borne infection due to Babesia protozoal parasites. The disease primarily spreads through an infected tick's bite, but direct animal-to-animal transmission may also occur. Dogs typically present with the acute and severe form of babesiosis, characterized by abnormal dark urine, fever, weakness, pale mucous membranes, depression, swollen lymph nodes, and an enlarged spleen. The disease can be transmitted to humans through a tick bite.

  • Bacterial pneumonia is an inflammation of the lung, usually caused by a bacterial or viral infection, but can be caused by inhalation of an irritant. Typical signs of bacterial pneumonia include fever, difficulty breathing, lethargy, and coughing. As these can also be caused by other diseases, diagnostics include a full physical exam, blood work, and radiographs, and may also require bronchoscopy or tracheal lavage to collect samples for cytology and bacterial culture and sensitivity. Treatment includes the use of one or more antibiotics that ideally would be selected using the results of a culture. Affected dogs may also require hospitalization and supportive care including intravenous fluids. The prognosis depends on the severity of the disease and whether there are any predisposing factors.

  • Dogs appear to be more susceptible to blastomycosis than many other species. The blastomycosis fungus seems to target the respiratory tract, although it may spread throughout the entire body. Cytology and/or histopathology are required to diagnose blastomycosis conclusively. Itraconazole is the preferred drug of treatment for most dogs. Prognosis is good for many cases of blastomycosis infection with recovery rates between 50-75%.

  • Dogs are exposed to botulism by eating raw meat or dead animals containing botulinum toxin produced by Clostridium botulinum. Botulism causes ascending paralysis of the nervous system. Clinical signs are reviewed as well as diagnostic tests and treatment. Prognosis is guarded depending on the amount of toxin ingested and the degree of supportive care available. There is no vaccine.

Our hospital is accredited by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA). Learn more about what this means for you and your pet.

Hospital Hours
Monday8:00am – 6:00pm
Tuesday8:00am – 6:00pm
Wednesday8:00am – 6:00pm
Thursday8:00am – 6:00pm
Friday8:00am – 6:00pm
Saturday8:00am – 12:00pm
SundayClosed

Kimberly Crest Veterinary Hospital
1423 East Kimberly Road
Davenport, Iowa, 52807

Phone: 563-386-1445
Fax: 563-386-5586
Email: [email protected]