What hidden dangers has your pet already been exposed to?
Along with many other residents of the Gulf Coast area, the staff here at Abshier-Meuth are all putting our lives back together after Harvey and his wet aftermath. Due to the magnitude of some of our current obstacles, there may be little problems that we all encounter which go unnoticed until they're BIGGER and harder to handle.
One such thing that we want our customers to watch out for would be any symptom of communicable diseases in their pets. Since many pets had to be rescued and some of them even spent time in shelters, they've been exposed to an unknown amount of dangers. Dangers which take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to make themselves known. Some of those dangers can even be transmitted to humans.
Leptospirosis - In dogs and cats. Incubation period of anywhere from 2-30 days. CAN EASILY BE TRANSMITTED TO HUMANS. Symptoms include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, fever, dark-colored-urine or lack of urine output. Leads to kidney failure and can be fatal. Here's the thing about Lepto, though - it's a bacteria that thrives in stagnant water. How many of us have had to wade through water in the last few weeks? Any time your dog exhibits these symptoms, it's definitely worth a visit to the vet.
Bordetella (kennel cough) - In dogs and rarely in cats. Incubation period of ~7 days. Symptoms include dry/hacking cough, lethargy, eye/nose discharge, fever. It's highly contagious but easily treatable.
Canine Influenza (H3N2 and H3N8 strains) - In dogs. Symptoms similar to kennel cough but much more severe. Also very contagious, yet treatable. Can be fatal in severe cases.
Distemper - In dogs. Incubation period of 2-10 days. Symptoms similar to kennel cough but much more severe. Often accompanied by vomiting and diarrhea. Late stages often also showing neurological symptoms like tremors or paralysis. If left untreated, symptoms can be fatal.
Parvovirus - In dogs. Incubation period of 3-7 days. Symptoms begin with vomiting and diarrhea, along with extreme lethargy. Very often fatal if left untreated, but if caught early can be overcome with supportive care (hospitalization, fluids, medications).
-and let's not forget about cats-
Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Mycoplasma - Various upper-respiratory diseases in cats. All exhibit the same symptoms in a variety of degrees: lethargy, in-appetance, coughing, sneezing, eye/nose discharge, fever, and sometimes oral ulcers. Cats are tricky because they're not as quick to show symptoms as dogs are, so any time your feline friend shows any of these symptoms make sure you contact your vet.
"Any time that we can detect a disease early on, it's better for the pet and the owner both," says Lisa Whitman, Receptionist for Abshier-Meuth. "It gives the patient a much better chance of recovery and cuts back on potential infection to other pets or humans. Treatment may also be less expensive when symptoms are just beginning versus when the patient has been sick for some time."
Joanne O'Donnell, Customer Service Representative states that "it's better to be safe than sorry. If you suspect your pet is acting different or may have contracted something from the flood, it's much better to have them checked out by the Veterinarian and get a clean bill of health."
Links of interest:
Bordetella, Pet Health Network - http://pethealthnetwork.com/dog-health/dog-diseases-conditions-a-z/bordetella-101-kennel-cough-and-your-dog
Lepto, TexVetPets - https://www.texvetpets.org/article/leptospirosis-serious-and-preventable/
Lepto Incubation Period, VetInfo - https://www.vetinfo.com/incubation-period-for-leptospirosis-in-dogs.html
Feline URI, Pet Health Network - http://pethealthnetwork.com/cat-health/cat-diseases-conditions-a-z/feline-upper-respiratory-infection