Infectious Diseases of Dogs

DOGS

Bacterial Infections

    1.      Borreliosis (Lyme Disease Group) (Dogs>Cats)

Borreliosis is a tickborne, bacterial disease of domestic animals and humans. The importance of borreliosis as a zoonotic disease is increasing; although the incidence of disease in a geographic area is similar in animals and humans, animals, especially dogs, are at significantly higher risk. Tick avoidance plays a role in disease control. Strategically, in endemic areas, young dogs should be vaccinated before natural exposure to ticks to attain the highest percentages of protection. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    2.      Brucellosis

Bacteria of the genus Brucella cause brucellosis. B canis is a cause of abortion in kenneled dogs. Both sexes appear to be equally susceptible. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    3.      Clostradial disease -Tetanus

Tetanus toxemia is caused by a specific neurotoxin produced by Clostridium tetani in necrotic tissue. Almost all mammals are susceptible to this disease, although dogs are relatively resistant. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    4.      Leptospirosis

Leptospirosis is a worldwide zoonotic disease of domestic animals and wildlife. It is caused by a spirochete bacteria classified under the Leptospira, of which there are ~17 species. Vaccination is recommended at yearly intervals but may be needed more frequently in enzootic areas. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    5.      Mycobacterial infections (Cat>Dog)

    1. A.      Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious, granulomatous disease caused by acid-fast bacilli of the genus Mycobacterium. Although commonly defined as a chronic, debilitating disease, TB occasionally assumes an acute, rapidly progressive course. False-negative tuberculin tests are common in dogs. Affected dogs should be euthanized because of public health concerns. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    1. B.      Mycobacterial infections other than tuberculosis

Mycobacteria found in soil and water have been isolated from tissues of animals. Mycobacterium fortuitum has been associated with pulmonary infections in dogs and cutaneous lesions in cats and dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.       

Rickettsial Infection

    1.      Ehrlichiosis related infections

Classical canine monocytic ehrlichiosis is caused by Ehrlichia canis , which infects the mononuclear cells of dogs. Anaplasma (Ehrlichia) platys is the cause of infectious cyclic thrombocytopenia of dogs. The brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus, transmits these agents. Prevention is enhanced by controlling ticks and using seronegative screened blood donors. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    2.      Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (Rickettsia rickettsii infection, Tick fever)

Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) is a disease of humans and dogs that is caused by Rickettsia rickettsii. These pathogens are transmitted primarily through the bites of infected ticks. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    3.      Salmon Poisoning Disease and Elokomin Fluke Fever (Neorickettsia spp. infection)

Salmon poisoning disease (SPD) is an acute, infectious disease of canids, in which the infective agent is transmitted through the various stages of a fluke in a snail-fish-dog life cycle. The name of the disease is misleading because no toxin is involved. Elokomin fluke fever (EFF) is an acute infectious disease of canids, ferrets, bears, and raccoons that resembles SPD but has a wider host range. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    4.      Eperythrozoonosis

A hemolytic, sometimes febrile, disease is caused by rickettsiae of the genus Eperythrozoon of the family Rickettsiaceae. Each Eperythrozoon spp is host specific. Dogs can be infected with E canis. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

Protozoal & Miscellaneous Infection

    1.      Amebiasis (Rare)

Amebiasis is an acute or chronic colitis, characterized by persistent diarrhea or dysentery. It is common in people and nonhuman primates, sometimes seen in dogs and cats, and rare in other mammals. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    2.      Coccidiosis

Coccidiosis is a usually acute invasion and destruction of intestinal mucosa by protozoa of the genera Eimeria or Isospora. In dogs, it is less often diagnosed but can result in clinical illness. Sanitation is important, especially in catteries and kennels. Raw meat should not be fed. Insect control should be established. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    3.      Toxoplasmosis

Toxoplasma gondii is a protozoan parasite that infects humans and other warm-blooded animals. Dogs are intermediate hosts of T. gondii. T gondii is an important zoonotic agent. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    4.      Flaggelates – Leishmaniasis

Visceral leishmaniasis is a chronic, severe, protozoal disease of humans, dogs, and certain rodents characterized by cutaneous or mucocutaneous lesions, lymphadenopathy, weight loss, anemia, lameness, renal failure, and occasionally epistaxis or ocular lesions. Canine leishmaniasis is a zoonosis, and dogs act as a reservoir of the parasite for humans where there is a competent vector. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    5.      Hepatozoonosis and American Canine Hepatozoonosis

Hepatozoonosis is a tickborne disease of wild and domestic carnivores caused by the protozoal agent, Hepatozoon canis. The brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus, transmits this organism. Unique features of the clinical presentation in North American dogs have suggested that a different strain or species of Hepatozoon may be responsible for the disease in North. The disease in North America is now referred to as a separate entity, American canine hepatozoonosis. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    6.      Neosporosis

Neospora caninum is an obligate intracellular protozoan parasite that has been confused previously with Toxoplasma gondii. The dog is the definitive host. In dogs, both pups and older dogs are affected. Not all littermates are affected. Dogs should not be allowed to defecate in cattle feed. There is no proven vaccine. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    7.      Piroplasmia – Babesiosis

Babesiosis is caused by intraerythrocytic protozoan parasites of the genus Babesia. The disease, which is transmitted by ticks, affects a wide range of domestic and wild animals and occasionally humans. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    8.      Trypanosomiasis (Rare)

    1. A.      Tsetse-transmitted Trypanosomiasis

This group of diseases caused by protozoa of the genus Trypanosoma affects all domestic animals. In dogs and cats, T brucei is probably the most important. The primary clinical signs are intermittent fever, anemia, and weight loss. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    1. B.      Chagas’ Disease (Trypanosoma cruzi infection)

Chagas’ disease is important in South America. The trypanosome is pathogenic to humans and occasionally to young dogs and cats; other domestic animals act as reservoir hosts. T cruzi should be suspected in endemic areas in dogs that die acutely or have myocarditis. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.  

    1. C.      Surra (Trypanosoma evansi infection)

Surra is separated from the tsetse-transmitted diseases because it is usually transmitted by other biting flies that are found within and outside tsetse fly areas. The disease can be fatal, particularly in camels, horses, and dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

Viral Infection

    1.      Rabies

Rabies is an acute viral encephalomyelitis that principally affects carnivores and bats, although it can affect any mammal. It is invariably fatal once clinical signs appear. Rabies is caused by lyssaviruses in the Rhabdovirus family. Recommended vaccination frequency is every 3 yr, after an initial series of 2 vaccines 1 yr apart. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    2.      Canine parvovirus infection

The origin of the canine parvovirus has not been established. Rottweilers, American Pit Bull Terriers, Doberman Pinschers, and German Shepherds are at increased risk of disease. Toy Poodles and Cocker Spaniels appear at decreased risk for developing the enteric disease. Initially, 2 common clinical forms of the disease were recognized—myocarditis and gastroenteritis. Vaccination is critical in the control of the disease. Vaccination of pups should begin at 5-8 wk of age, preferably with a high antigen-density vaccine. The last vaccination should be given at 16-20 wk of age, and annual vaccination thereafter is recommended. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    3.      Canine adenovirus infection - Infectious canine hepatitis

Infectious canine hepatitis (ICH) is a worldwide, contagious disease of dogs with signs that vary from a slight fever and congestion of the mucous membranes to severe depression, marked leukopenia, and prolonged bleeding time. Modified-live virus vaccines are available and are often combined with other vaccines. Vaccination against ICH is recommended at the time of canine distemper vaccinations. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    4.      Canine distemper (Hardpad disease)

Canine distemper is a highly contagious, systemic, viral disease of dogs seen worldwide. Clinically, a diphasic fever, leukopenia, GI and respiratory catarrh, and frequently pneumonic and neurologic complications characterize it. Pups should be vaccinated with MLV vaccine when 6 wk old and at 2- to 4-wk intervals until 16 wk old. Annual revaccination has been suggested because of the breaks in neurologic distemper that can occur in stressed, diseased, or immunosuppressed dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    5.      Infectious tracheobronchitis  (Kennel cough)

Infectious tracheobronchitis results from inflammation of the upper airways. It is a mild, self-limiting disease but may progress to fatal bronchopneumonia in puppies or to chronic bronchitis in debilitated adult or aged dogs. Dogs should be immunized with modified live virus vaccines against distemper, parainfluenza, and CAV-2, which also provides protection against CAV-1. An initial vaccination should be given at 6-8 wk and repeated twice at 3- to 4-wk intervals until the dog is 14-16 wk old. Revaccination should be performed annually. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    6.      Canine herpes viral infection

Canine herpesvirus is a severe, often fatal, viral infection of puppies worldwide. It also may be associated with upper respiratory infection or a vesicular vaginitis or posthitis in adult dogs. No vaccine is available. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    7.      Papillomas (Warts)

Papilloma viruses are small, double-stranded DNA viruses of the Papovaviridae family. In dogs, 3 clinical presentations of canine papilloma virus infection have been described.

  1. A.      Canine mucous membrane papillomatosis

Canine mucous membrane papillomatosis primarily affects young dogs. It is characterized by the presence of multiple warts on oral mucous membranes from lips to (occasionally) the esophagus and on the conjunctival mucous membranes and adjacent haired skin. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

  1. B.      Cutaneous papillomas

Cutaneous papillomas are indistinguishable from the warts that develop on or around mucous membranes. However, they are more frequently solitary and develop on older dogs. Cocker Spaniels and Kerry Blue Terriers may be predisposed. Recently, a syndrome characterized by papillomatosis of one or more footpads has been described. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

  1. C.      Cutaneous inverted papillomas

Cutaneous inverted papillomas have more in common clinically with intracutaneous cornifying epitheliomas. In this disease of young, mature dogs, lesions most commonly develop on the ventral abdomen where they appear as raised papulonodules with a keratotic center. Infrequently, viral papillomas in dogs may progress to invasive squamous cell carcinomas. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

Fungal Infection (Mycoses)

    1.      North American Blastomycosis (dogs>cats)

North American blastomycosis, caused by the dimorphic fungus Blastomyces dermatitidis, is characterized by pyogranulomatous lesions in various tissues. It is most common in man, dogs, and cats. Blastomycosis is generally limited to North America. The signs vary with organ involvement and are not specific. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    2.      Histoplasmosis (cats>dogs)

Histoplasmosis is a chronic, noncontagious, disseminated, granulomatous disease of humans and other animals caused by the dimorphic fungus Histoplasma capsulatum. The signs vary and are nonspecific, reflecting the various organ involvements. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    3.      Cryptococcosis (cats>dogs)

Cryptococcosis is a systemic fungal disease that may affect the respiratory tract (especially the nasal cavity), CNS, eyes, and skin. The causal fungus, Cryptococcus neoformans, exists in the environment and in tissues in a yeast form. In contrast to cats, dogs often have disseminated disease, with CNS or ocular involvement. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    4.      Sporotrichosis (cats>dogs)

Sporotrichosis is a sporadic chronic granulomatous disease of humans and various domestic and laboratory animals caused by Sporothrix schenckii. Sporotrichosis may be grouped into 3 forms—lymphocutaneous, cutaneous, and disseminated. The lymphocutaneous form is the most common. Sporotrichosis should be considered a zoonosis because cases of animal-to-human transmission are well documented. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    5.      Candidiasis

Candidiasis is a localized mucocutaneous disease, which is distributed worldwide in a variety of animals, caused by species of the yeast-like fungus, Candida, most commonly C albicans. C albicans is a normal inhabitant of the nasopharynx, GI tract, and external genitalia and is opportunistic in causing disease. Infections are rare in dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    6.      Oomycosis (Pythiosis, Lagenidiosis)

Oomycosis is caused by pathogens in the class Oomycetes. These organisms are not true fungi but are aquatic pathogens in the kingdom Stramenopila. Organisms of significance in veterinary medicine include various species of Pythium insidiosum, the cause of a cutaneous, subcutaneous, and GI disease and Lagenidium spp, the cause of cutaneous and systemic lesions and large vessel aneurysms in dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    7.      Zygomycosis

Zygomycosis is used to describe infection with fungi in the class Zygomycetes and 2 genera in the order Entomophthorales, Basidiobolus and Conidiobolus. True zygomycete infections are rare, but conidiobolomycosis and basidiobolomycosis are more common and cause pyogranulomatous lesions. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    8.      Coccidioidomycosis

Coccidioidomycosis is a dustborne; noncontagious infection caused by the dimorphic fungus Coccidioides immitis. While many species of animals, including humans, are susceptible, only dogs are affected significantly. The disease varies from inapparent (cattle, sheep, pigs, dogs, cats) to progressive, disseminated, and fatal (dogs, nonhuman primates, cats, and humans). For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    9.      Aspergillosis

Aspergillosis is caused by a number of Aspergillus spp, especially A. fumigatus. It is primarily a respiratory infection that may become generalized. In dogs, aspergillosis is typically localized to the nasal cavity or paranasal sinuses and is usually caused by infection with A. fumigatus. Nasal aspergillosis occurs mainly in dolichocephalic breeds. Disseminated disease in dogs is seen most often in German Shepherds. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    10. Geotrichosis (rare)

Geotrichosis is a rare mycosis due to infection with Geotrichum candidum, a ubiquitous saprophytic fungus of soil, decaying organic matter, and contaminated food. G candidum is part of the normal flora of the mouth and intestinal tract in humans. The organism has caused systemic disease in dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    11. Mycetomas

Mycetomas are granulomatous nodules of the subcutaneous tissues that contain tissue grains or granules. Within the grains are dense colonies of the organism. When fungi cause such lesions, they are known as eumycotic mycetomas. The causal agents of eumycotic mycetomas include a variety of saprophytic geophilic fungi. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    12. Paecilomycosis

Systemic (mainly pulmonary) mycoses caused by Paecilomyces spp have been described in humans and various other animals. Infection in captive reptiles and amphibians is probably fairly common; other hosts include dogs, horses, cats (nasal granuloma), and goats (mastitis). For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    13. Penicilliosis

Infections with Penicillium spp are rare in domestic animals. However, the fungus has been isolated from a case from invasive destructive disease of nasal tissues in dogs. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    14. Phaeohyphomycosis

Phaeohyphomycosis is a broad clinicopathologic designation that refers to chronic cutaneous, subcutaneous, or mucosal infection caused by one of several genera and species of pigmented fungi of the family Dematiaceae. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

    15. Rhinosporidiosis

Rhinosporidiosis is a chronic, nonfatal, pyogranulomatous infection, primarily of the nasal mucosa and occasionally of the skin of dogs caused by the fungus Rhinosporidium seeberi. For more information click here or call your veterinarian.

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