LEPTOSPIROSIS (Lepto): It's in your backyard!
by NW Vet Staff
Leptospirosis Vaccination Recommendation
Dear Pet Parents:
We are recommending that all dogs be vaccinated against leptospirosis due to the potentially severe nature of the disease.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that can be deadly. Leptospira bacteria can cause severe, sometimes permanent, damage to the liver and kidneys of dogs, humans and other animals. The bacteria can be spread through the urine of infected rodents, squirrels, chipmunks, raccoons, opossums and other common wildlife.
Your dog can develop leptospirosis after contact with water or soil contaminated with the bacteria. Humans can also be infected via contact with contaminated urine, water or soil.
Initial clinical signs and symptoms of leptospirosis in dogs may include flu-like symptoms (fever, vomiting, abdominal pain, weakness and muscle pain). Severe cases can lead to damage of the liver, kidneys or central nervous system.
Reduce the risk of leptospirosis by:
• Vaccinating your dog
• Avoiding water that may be contaminated with the bacteria, especially stagnant water
• Thorough hand washing for you and your family—especially when handling anything that might have urine on it
The vaccine is administered as follows: Dogs that have not been previously vaccinated against leptospirosis should receive two doses of vaccine 2-4 weeks apart, and then receive an annual booster. Puppies may be vaccinated at as young as 6 weeks of age, although for most dogs, we recommend starting at 12 weeks of age or older.
Additional information regarding leptospirosis is available from the Centers for Disease Control at http://www.cdc.gov/leptospirosis/.
Thank you for taking the time to read this important information. Please call us to find out more, or to schedule an appointment for your dog’s leptospirosis vaccination today.
Doctors at Northgate Vet & Broadway Animal Hospital