Common Diseases
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DISTEMPER

This disease is caused by a virus that attacks every tissue in the body.

Symptoms: Similar to a bad cold with fever. Sometimes it causes pneumonia, runny eyes and nose and diarrhea.

Recovery: With treatment, the dog may make a temporary recovery, followed by even more serious symptoms such as recurrent convulsions. Death is common. If a dog does recover, it may be disabled with nervous disorders.

HEPATITIS

This virus is spread by contact with an infected animal or its stool or urine. It affects the liver and kidneys. Hepatitis is most serious in very young animals.

Symptoms: high fever, depression and lack of appetite.

Recovery: Recovered animals may be afflicted with chronic illnesses.

LEPTOSPIROSIS

This disease can be caused by either of two organisms called spirochetes. Some strains are contagious to humans and can be transmitted by contact with urine of an infected dog. Leptospirosis attacks the liver and kidneys.

Recovery: Recovered animals can act as carriers.

PARVOVIRUS

Without immunization, an afflicted animal's intestinal tract is attacked by the virus.

Symptoms: Vomiting, diarrhea, bleeding, and collapse.

Recovery: Prompt veterinary care is essential to recovery but still there is a great likelihood of death.

KENNEL COUGH

 This disease may be caused by one of several organisms and can spread rapidly through a kennel of dogs. Usually not life-threatening, the disease causes respiratory problems.

LYME'S DISEASE

It is a disease transmitted by ticks.

Symptoms: Lyme disease is not easy to detect for there are a variety of symptoms. Clinical signs may not appear for a long period after initial infection. The common clinical signs in animals are fever, inappetence, acute onset of lameness with no history of trauma, and arthralgia. These can develop within weeks of initial infection. Recurring lameness, lymphadenopathy, glomerulonephritis, or myocarditis can develop weeks to months later.

Outcome: Intermittent lameness and fever, heart disease, kidney disease and nerve disorders. Left untreated, the disease can progress to a chronic arthritis, leaving your pet with a lifetime problem.

RABIES

It's caused by a virus that is shed in saliva and thus transmitted by the bite of an infected animal. The disease attacks nerve tissues, resulting in paralysis and death. All pets should be vaccinated for rabies because it can be transmitted to humans by contact with an infected animal. Rabies is always fatal!

If your pet has been bitten

  • Immediately consult your veterinarian.
  • Report the bite to the local animal control authorities.
  • Dogs, cats and ferrets that are currently vaccinated should be revaccinated immediately, kept under the owner's control, and observed for a period as specified by state law or local ordinances (normally 45 days or more).
  • Animals with expired vaccinations will need to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • Unvaccinated dogs, cats and ferrets exposed to a rabid animal may need to be euthanatized immediately. Alternatively, the animal should be checked and immediately placed in strict isolation for 6 months and vaccinated 1 month before being released.
  • If bitten by a rabid animal, other animals should be euthanatized immediately.
Consult your veterinarian for the recommended vaccination schedule for your pet.
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