Pet Health Warning - Respiratory Disease

Murdoch University has recently confirmed a localised occurrence of a respiratory disease in dogs caused by a bacterium known as Streptococcus zooepidemicus. Two dogs from the kennel died. Although other dogs on the property were affected, they have since made a full recovery with appropriate treatment. Streptococcus zooepidemicus is an infectious cause of respiratory disease in dogs. Outbreaks tend to be confined to kennels with larger numbers of dogs.

Owners are advised to monitor their dogs for signs of respiratory disease that may include:-
  • coughing,
  • nasal discharge,
  • general dullness,
  • loss of appetite,
  • blood from nose or mouth,
  • difficulty breathing,
  • collapse or sudden death.

Treatment is usually effective, particularly if started early in the course of the disease. Your veterinarian should be contacted immediately if you notice any of these signs or have any concerns regarding the wellbeing of your dogs.

Human infections with Streptococcus zooepidemicus are rare, and spread of infection from infected dogs is even less common. The initial symptoms of infection in humans are vague and include fever, malaise and nausea, but more severe disease can occur. Any person that has been in contact with dogs showing signs of respiratory disease and that feels unwell should contact their doctor for advice.

Unfortunately there is currently no vaccine to protect your pet against Streptococcus zooepidemicus, therefore If your dog is showing any of the signs mentioned above please contact your local Vetwest Animal Hospital immediately. 

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