The last of the "Big Four" is leptospirosis, a bacterial disease of dogs, human beings and other animals. It occurs in two forms: 1) canicola fever, and 2) Weil's disease. Both types are transmissible from animals to man. The organisms causing leptospirosis belong to the spirochete group of bacteria.

Leptospirosis affects the kidneys and liver. It is marked by a yellowish discoloration of the dog's skin and mucous membranes (gums, palate, nostrils, etc.). Distemper-like symptoms appear in the early stages. These are weakness, no appetite, vomiting, increased thirst, nasal discharge and general ema ciation. The temperature rises to 103° to 105° the first day, then drops sharply to as low as 97°F. the next day. There is also muscular stiffness, especially the hind legs; a heavy, dark urine; abdominal pain; a watery and bloody bowel movement; and jaundice. Leptospirosis requires immediate veterinary attention.

Rats are known carriers of the organism causing leptospirosis and the flea, louse, tick and fly are suspected as being carriers. The mosquito is also suspect. Your prevention program should include the elimination of fleas, lice and ticks from the dog. Insect and rodent control should be practiced, both for human and animal protection. Since rats often get into dog food and other supplies, discard any stale or loose dog food. Avoid damaged packages of dog food in the food stores.


Leptospirosis vaccine is available. It is important to keep in mind that while the leptospirosis vaccine affords long-lasting protection, it will not last for the dog's lifetime. You will be wise to have the dog revaccinated from time to time, especially if there is an outbreak of leptospirosis in the neighborhood.

Pamper Your Dog

Pamper Your Dog

The cookbook that your dog and dogs everywhere have been waiting for has finally arrived. Pamper Your Dog unleashes 130 recipes for tasty treats and meals for your canine friend that are sure to have your dog salivating. You cook for yourself and your family, so don't ignore your most faithful of friends. Pamper Your Dog will show you how to prepare tasty and healthful treats and main meals for their dogs without a lot of cost or work. This great collection of recipes features 130 tempting and tasty treats for your dog.

Get My Free Ebook

Post a comment