Worms & Germs Blog

Tag Archives: tuberculosis

Feline TB warning: Possible food link

Posted in Cats
A recent article from the Veterinary Information Network (VIN) News Service describes a strange cluster of feline tuberculosis (TB) cases in the UK, with a possible link to food. In cats, TB is rare and usually caused by Mycobacterium bovis, a bacterium most often associated with cattle and bovine TB. M. bovis is present in the… Continue Reading

Pre-multidrug-resistant TB in a dog

Posted in Dogs, Other diseases
A few times a year I get questions about tuberculosis (TB) in dogs, typically after a person is diagnosed with active TB and people want to know what the risks are to, and from, their dog. It’s often tough to answer those questions, because there’s limited information available. Risks exist, but how much of a… Continue Reading

Tuberculosis and dogs

Posted in Dogs
When I’m giving talks about zoonotic diseaes to people in the human healthcare field, I sometimes mention tuberculosis (TB) as an example of a serious human disease with poorly defined (but theoretically important) risks of transmission between people and pets. TB is a very important disease of increasing of concern because of its resurgence in many… Continue Reading

TB in a bird…Human health risk?

Posted in Birds
A bird specialty store owner wrote me recently, concerned about potential tuberculosis (TB) exposure. A client’s bird had been diagnosed with "human TB" and that person had spent a lot of time with the bird. The source of the TB hadn’t been identified, and the store owner was worried about the risk that he/she had been exposed… Continue Reading

Elephant TB: Ringling Brothers vs PETA

Posted in Other animals
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is battling Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus because of Karen, an elephant with tuberculosis (TB). The animal rights group is claiming that the elephant poses a public health risk because she has TB, and it appears that their appeal had initially convinced Baltimore city council… Continue Reading

Elephant-human transmission of tuberculosis

Posted in Other animals
You can probably tell from various posts that I’m a fan of the CDC’s journal Emerging Infectious Diseases. It’s a great journal containing interesting infectious disease reports about people and animals (it’s free too, which is a nice bonus). In addition to the ferret infection I wrote about, the last edition also has a very interesting… Continue Reading

Tuberculosis in pets: The treatment quandry

Posted in Cats
A few days ago, I wrote about tuberculosis (TB) exposure in several people who performed a necropsy on an infected dog. As part of that investigation, a cat in the household was tested and was also positive for TB. It was euthanized because of the public health concerns. A logical question from a reader was "Is… Continue Reading

Tuberculosis exposure from a dog

Posted in Dogs
Tuberculosis (TB) is a very important public health issue.  Caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis, TB is likely the most widespread human infectious disease. Although it primarily affects people, it can rarely affect various animal species as well, including pets. The relevance of dogs to human TB is unclear: we know dogs can (rarely) be… Continue Reading

Mycobacterium bovis… don’t blame the cows?

Posted in Other diseases
I recently wrote about Mycobacterium bovis, the cause of bovine TB and a pathogen that can be transmitted to people and rarely to pets. A reader made the following comment: "Having come across your very interesting blog, I was questioning/wondering whether your statement regarding Mycobacterium bovis, "whose main natural reservoir is cattle", is in fact… Continue Reading

“The other TB” Mycobacterium bovis

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Other diseases
Tuberculosis (TB) is an incredibly important disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It’s a huge problem internationally, and the problem is getting worse in many areas. Another cause of "tubercular" (or tuberculosis-like) disease is Mycobacterium bovis, a related microorganism whose main natural reservoir is cattle. Mycobacterium bovis is cause of bovine TB. It can also infect… Continue Reading

Tuberculosis in a dog in Ontario

Posted in Dogs, Other diseases
A report in the latest newsletter from the University of Guelph Animal Health Laboratory describes a case of tuberculosis (TB) in a pet dog. The dog was a seven-year-old Bichon Frise that had an abdominal mass, low-grade fever, nasal discharge and pneumonia. Tuberculosis was diagnosed by testing a sample of the mass that was obtained… Continue Reading

Transmission of tuberculosis to pets

Posted in Cats, Dogs, Other diseases
Some people consider tuberculosis to be a disease of historical interest, but TB is alive and well, and spreading. TB is caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis, a microorganism that can cause severe lung disease. TB rates are climbing rapidly in some countries and the emergence of highly drug resistant strains is a major concern. Anytime infectious diseases… Continue Reading