lepto picWhat is Leptospirosis? It’s a bacterial disease that can be found in most animals including livestock and wildlife. The bacteria are passed through urine into wet soil and water sources, where they reside for long periods of time and reproduce.
Why is this an important disease? Humans can be infected with leptospirosis exactly the same way your pets can, mainly water sources. Avoid water that is contaminated withthe bacteria, especially stagnant water.lepto pic1
Where is it prevalent? It’s prevalent in rural, suburban and urbanized areas. The bacteria can be present in any stagnant surface water, and recreational water sources.
How can my pet get Leptospirosis? Your pet can become infected by drinking, swimming in or walking through contaminated water (including urine). The bacteria can enter the bloodstream through a cut in the skin or through mucous membranes. This bacteria is contagious and can be transmitted from dog to dog.
What are the signs of Leptospirosis? The most common symptoms include: fever, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, weakness, depression, and lethargy. Jaundice can occur which is yellow cast in the gums of the mouth and whites of the eyes. In the most severe cases the disease can lead to kidney failure or liver failure and may be fatal.
How is Leptospirosis diagnosed? The disease is best diagnosed by your veterinarian and can be challenging to diagnosis. It may require numerous blood and urine test and the process can be costly.
How can I protect my pet from Leptospirosis? You can protect your pet from this potentially fatal disease with a vaccination. Vaccinating your pet before exposure to the disease may avoid the emotional and financial trauma of dealing with this disease.
Leptospirosis Vaccination: This vaccine protects against the four most common strains of leptospirosis bacteria commonly diagnosed today. The first time receiving this vaccination it’s a two-shot series that happen 2-3 weeks apart from each shot, than revaccination will occur annually or once a year.
“ We’ve seen a resurgent of this lethal disease!!”
Be sure to contact us at Animal Central 303-469-7387 (PETS) or your veterinarian for more information or to schedule and appointment.
By: Dr. Stroberg DVM and the staff at Animal Central