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Campylobacter Outbreak from Pet Store Puppies (and an Antibiotic Rant)

Posted in Dogs
This edition of Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports has a summary of the 2016-2018 campylobacterosis outbreak linked to pet store puppies. Nothing is particularly surprising, but that doesn’t mean it’s not disappoint (or depressing). Check out the article here for the full story. Here’s a brief (ish) summary. It all started when sequencing of Campylobacter… Continue Reading

A new Staph on the block

Posted in Dogs, Other diseases
It’s probably not actually a “new” bacterium but rather recognition of a species that we’ve been mixing up with something else, but regardless, a paper in the International Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Microbiology (yes, that’s an actual journal) describes a new Staphylococcus species, Staphylococcus cornubiensis (Murray et al. 2018). Here’s what we know: The… Continue Reading

Pets as a cause of death in natural disasters

Posted in Cats, Dogs
No, it’s not pets freaking out and killing people. It’s people staying in harm’s way during natural disasters because they can’t take their pets with them. I saw some data about this from Hurricane Katrina years ago, and while I can’t remember the exact number, an astounding number of deaths were associated with people who… Continue Reading

Bad headlines

Posted in Dogs, Other animals, Rabies
I realize headline writers are trying to attract attention, and sometimes they don’t know much about the content. As a result, some headlines are quite over the top, and that can freak people out. Here are some examples from the past couple of days: 4 year old girl catches life-threatening infection by trying on shoes… Continue Reading

Human rabies death, Delaware, US

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Other animals, Rabies, Vaccination
Human deaths from rabies are common in some developing countries (where tens of thousands die from canine rabies every year) but rare in developed countries. It’s an almost invariably fatal disease, but at the same time it’s almost completely preventable because of the quality of vaccines and post-exposure prophylaxis available. Getting those treatments to the… Continue Reading

Ticks know no borders

Posted in Cats, Dogs
While ticks don’t care about political boundaries, researchers often do (or practical aspects dictate that we must).  That doesn’t mean we can’t work together, though. A recent post at our related site petsandticks.com talks about the differences between US and Canadian tick submissions, and how US residents can submit ticks to the Show Us Your… Continue Reading

More Capnocytophaga Q and A

Posted in Dogs
Capnocytophaga questions keep coming in. I guess that’s good in some ways, because I usually get a lot of blank stares when I mention that bacterium. A recent article about the risks of Capnocytophaga and exposure to dog saliva includes some good information about the topic, but the statements below highlight some issues: It’s important to… Continue Reading

Eastern Equine Encephalitis: Ontario

Posted in Horses
It’s that time of year. Mosquitoes have been annoying me for months (I get bitten multiple times a day where I live, even with repellent), but now they’re becoming a bigger issue. While mosquitoes bite all season, some of the diseases they transmit are only a significant risk at certain times of year. One high… Continue Reading

Doxycycline use and resistant Lyme disease

Posted in Dogs
“Use it and lose it” is often said when it comes to antibiotic resistance concerns. Every time we use an antibiotic (in a person or animal), there’s some potential for resistance to emerge. The more we use antibiotics, and the worse we use them, the greater the risk, generally speaking. Questions about the (rampant) use… Continue Reading

Capnocytophaga in the news… again

Posted in Dogs, Uncategorized
Every couple of months there’s a news report about a person with infection caused by the dog-associated bacterium Capnocytophaga canimorsus. Most of these reports don’t get too much attention, but every once in a while they get picked up pretty widely, resulting in another round of questions about this strange bacterium. It’s a bit of… Continue Reading

Canine Leishmania map

Posted in Dogs
One of the first diseases that really hit home for me in terms of concerns about canine importation and travel was leishmaniasis. This nasty parasitic disease is something I certainly didn’t learn about in vet school, and it wasn’t on my radar at all until I started getting calls for help managing infected dogs. As… Continue Reading

Ontario hits 10 000 dRIT rabies tests since 2015

Posted in Other animals, Rabies
Today’s post comes from Rachel Gagnon, Rabies Science Transfer Specialist with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF), highlighting some of the amazing work being done in Ontario in the ongoing battle against wildlife rabies. Ontario’s rabies control program is a world leader when it comes to controlling and eliminating rabies. The MNRF… Continue Reading

Canine and feline antiparasitics

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Parasites
Negotiating the world of antiparasitics for dogs and cats can be daunting. With the wide range of products, similarly named products with different ingredients and differently named products with the same ingredients, it’s hard to keep up. The Ontario Animal Health Network as put together some useful tables that outline antiparasitic products available in Canada… Continue Reading

Melioidosis in a dog

Posted in Dogs
Melioidosis is a disease that wouldn’t come to mind with a sick dog here in Canada. However, it is present in various parts of the world and is also a serious disease in people. Recognizing a case in North America is rare (and it’s easy to miss since most veterinarians haven’t even heard of it,… Continue Reading

International animal disease mapping

Posted in Dogs
We’ve tried a number of different infectious diseases initiatives in the past, aimed at increasing infectious disease education and awareness of both veterinarians and pet owners. Some have worked very well (like this blog), others less so. However, there’s still a lot that can be done. Here’s our latest initiative – whether it flies or… Continue Reading

Companion animal parasite forecasts: US

Posted in Dogs
I’m a little late writing about this (since I’m talking about 2018 forecasts midway through 2018), but the Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC)‘s parasite forecasts are worth a look. They don’t include Canada, but they show some interesting predicted patterns in the US. The maps are below, but check out the CAPC website to get… Continue Reading

Bird bugs, horse abortions and sick vet students

Posted in Birds, Horses
When I talk about infection control (or infectious diseases, in general), I emphasize the need to avoid tunnel vision. Sometimes, we run into situations where someone says “that animal tested negative for [name your bug], so we don’t have anything to worry about.” Well, no. It means you (probably) don’t have to worry about that… Continue Reading

Canine lifetime Lyme study

Posted in Dogs
At the 2018 American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM) forum, Dr. Michelle Evason gave an update on the Canadian canine lifetime Lyme study, which she also wrote about briefly last year on this blog when the study was launched.  It’s a longterm (lifetime, hopefully) study following a large group of dogs, looking at Lyme… Continue Reading