Worms & Germs Blog

Tag Archives: travel

Human Rabies: Virginia

Posted in Dogs, Rabies, Vaccination
Every few weeks I get a call or an email about travel-associated rabies exposure concerns. It’s usually from someone traveling to southeast Asia or India who has been bitten by a stray dog. Most of the time, it’s an unvaccinated person and the dog isn’t available for monitoring or testing. Since rabies is endemic in… Continue Reading

Canine flu strikes again – Illinois

Posted in Dogs, Vaccination
Canine influenza has once again reared its ugly head in fairly spectacular fashion, this time in Bloomington, IL.  Apparently there have been numerous laboratory-confirmed cases, and also many suspected cases, and likely still more cases that have gone completely unreported.  It’s estimated that “hundreds” of dogs may have been affected already – it’s very difficult… Continue Reading

More dog travel issues

Posted in Dogs, Rabies, Vaccination
Importation issues, Part 1 A Facebook post was forwarded to me the other day. It reads “Drove to the airport today to pick up this lovely little girl [puppy] who flew all the way to Montreal from Baku Azerbaijan. Spent the afternoon with her romping around in Westmount Park. She will be up for adoption… Continue Reading

Rabies vaccination for travelers

Posted in Rabies
For an almost invariably fatal disease, people sometimes take a surprisingly lax approach to rabies prevention. Much attention is paid to vaccination of pets (well, not by everyone, but it’s pretty good) – and that’s great, but sometimes people do a better job of vaccinating their dogs than themselves. It’s not because they care about… Continue Reading

Monkey bites in the military

Posted in Other animals
I write a lot about animal bites, and for good reason since they are common and can be very severe. Usually, it’s dog bites. Sometimes it’s cat bites, or more rarely injuries from birds or other critters. Monkey bites not so much, but they happen. I had an email question about rabies exposure from a… Continue Reading

Ok…maybe we should think about zebras sometimes

Posted in Other animals
The old saying is "when you hear hoof-steps, think horses, not zebras." In a medical context, it means common things occur commonly, so don’t start off thinking about wild and bizarre conditions before you’ve ruled out the usual suspects. Along that line, when I hear "rabies," I think "bats, raccoons, dogs, cats, foxes…" I don’t think about…… Continue Reading

Pet travel misinformation

Posted in Dogs
Travel always carries a risk of infectious diseases. More people are paying attention to their health and going to travel clinics to find out about these risks and what preventive measures they can take. They still constitute only a minority of travelers, but it’s an improvement. There aren’t travel clinics for pets, so travelers thinking… Continue Reading

Israel issues rabies travel warning for tourists to India

Posted in Dogs
Israel’s Health Ministry is recommending rabies vaccination for people traveling to India.This seems to be mainly in response to the recent high-profile case of an English woman who died of rabies acquired from a dog in India. While it was high-profile, that certainly wasn’t the only travel-associated rabies infection in the past year.  Rabies exposure… Continue Reading

Travel-associated rabies in the UK

Posted in Dogs
Just as I was getting ready to write about a recent case of travel-associated rabies in the UK, a second suspected case has been identified in the UK. They’re not linked and it’s just a co-incidence that the two have been identified in a short period of time, but they highlight the potential risks of… Continue Reading

Toronto rabies case update

Posted in Dogs
Identification of the strain of rabies in the first person in Toronto to be diagnosed with rabies in the past 81 years has essentially confirmed that the infection was acquired abroad. Toronto Public Health has indicated that the strain obtained from the infected man is one known to circulate in dogs in the Dominican Republic,… Continue Reading

Rabies in Toronto man

Posted in Rabies
Toronto Public Health has confirmed the diagnosis of rabies in a person in the city of Toronto, the first such diagnosis since 1931. Details are limited at this point, but there appears to be strong suspicion that this is a travel-associated infection. The affected person is a 41-year-old man who was working in the Dominican… Continue Reading

Blastomycosis in Michigan dogs

Posted in Dogs
Close to a dozen dogs in the Big Bay area of Michigan’s upper peninsula have been diagnosed with blastomycosis, an uncommon but regionally important disease. Blastomycosis is caused by a fungus, Blastomyces dermatitidis. It’s a dimorphic fungus, meaning it exists in 2 forms: Normally, it lives in the environment in the mold form. This is… Continue Reading

Travel, pets and infectious disease risks

Posted in Dogs
An important concept when dealing with infectious diseases is consideration of the risk that an animal has been, or will be, exposed to a particular microorganism. Some diseases vary greatly geographically, and something that’s very important in one region may be rare or non-existent in another. Good veterinarians are aware of disease trends in their… Continue Reading