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Raw pet food recall and human illness, Minnesota, USA

Posted in Dogs, Salmonella
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has recalled some lots of raw pet food from Woody’s Pet Food Deli, after linking them to a human infection. The link isn’t definite, but was obviously enough to prompt a recall. The situation involves a person who developed salmonellosis and, as is typical, an investigation of possible sources ensued.… Continue Reading

Echinococcus multilocularis: Ontario, Canada

Posted in Deworming, Dogs, Parasites
Echinococcus multilocularis, a small tapeworm with a big name, is causing big concerns in Ontario, an area that was until recently considered free of this parasite. This tapeworm is normally found in the intestinal tract of wild canids (e.g. coyotes, foxes) and can also infect dogs. That itself isn’t a problem, since the intestinal form… Continue Reading

Rabies knowledge of vets and physicians

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Rabies
I spend a lot of time answering questions about rabies exposures, and sometimes trying to clear up misinformation. Rabies is a very important infectious disease but in many regions (like here) it’s fortunately rare in domestic animals and people. However, rarity can breed complacency or lack of (or loss of) knowledge. That creates problems when… Continue Reading

Holiday bites

Posted in Dogs, Rabies, Vaccination
No, we haven’t changed to a cooking blog, I’m talking about bites of the canine variety. I can’t think of any specific data that would show it, but I wonder whether bites are more common around the holidays, with disrupted schedules and more visitors (and a potential midnight intruder in a red suit). The rabies-related… Continue Reading

Update: Canine influenza, Ontario (December 3)

Posted in Dogs, Other diseases
I’m once again prepared to call Ontario (and Canada) canine influenza-free… for now, at least. The latest cluster, associated with another importation of the virus from China, seems to have been contained. The last new positive case was identified October 30, with the likely date of exposure being October 23. We are now beyond the… Continue Reading

Raw pet food and human salmonellosis

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Salmonella
We’ve known for some time that there are human health risks from feeding pets raw meat-based diets. Most of the evidence of this has been anecdotal, as published reports have been sparse. A few better documented reports have started to appear, including the fatal E. coli O157 infection I wrote about recently. A few days… Continue Reading

CDC didn’t actually say “don’t dress up your chickens for Halloween”…but don’t do it anyway

Posted in Other animals, Salmonella
Lots of media reports have been saying that the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have warned people not to dress up their chickens for Halloween. Yes, chickens. I wouldn’t have thought that policing chicken fashion would be high on the CDC’s to-do list, but the concern is obviously related to the perpetual outbreaks… Continue Reading

Pet therapy dogs and MRSA

Posted in Dogs, MRSA/MRSP
My email and phone have been lighting up over the past few days about news reports describing a study presented at a recent scientific meeting in San Francisco. I wasn’t there and the results aren’t published, so I don’t have a lot to go on, but here are some highlights from the news article on… 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

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

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

Will you test my tick?

Posted in Dogs, Parasites
If you’d asked me a few years ago, I wouldn’t have said that’s a question I’d expect to get (daily). However, we’re in a different world tick-wise now, so it’s a common and understandable question, particularly because of our tick tracking efforts. The answer is no/possibly/maybe later. How’s that for a straight answer? We are… Continue Reading

Turtles and Salmonella

Posted in Other animals, Reptiles, Salmonella
Taking a break from canine flu and going back to an old favorite… Salmonella and reptiles. CDC has released their final update on a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Agbeni infections associated with contact with pet turtles. Turtles are very well known as high risk animals for transmitting Salmonella. Even healthy turtles often carry Salmonella and… Continue Reading

New multistate salmonella outbreak

Posted in Other animals, Salmonella
I’m giving my brain a short break from canine flu, so here’s an interesting report about a multistate US outbreak of salmonellosis linked to… no, not turtles… no, not baby poultry… but guinea pigs. While guinea pigs have been associated with a few different zoonotic diseases, they’re a pretty benign pet species overall. Yet, our… Continue Reading