How to Protect Your Pets and Family from the Bacterial Disease Leptospirosis

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Playing How to Keep Your Pets Safe from a Dangerous New Outbreak

The Doctors detail the dangers of leptospirosis, a bacterial disease that can affect both animals and humans.

In Los Angeles County, there have been over 100 recent cases in dogs, and in New York City, 15 humans contracted the disease with 14 people being hospitalized and 1 reported death.

Veterinarian Dr. Jeremy Kimmelstiel explains the bacterial disease can be passed from animals to people and is carried in the urine of animals like deer, raccoons, rodents, dogs, and other mammals. 

Signs and symptoms of possible leptospirosis in pets, according to The CDC, include:

  • Fever
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Refusal to eat
  • Severe weakness and depression
  • Stiffness
  • Severe muscle pain
  • Inability to have puppies

Dr. Kimmelstiel says if your pet has any of the above symptoms to see your veterinarian and have your animal checked and if anyone in your household has any of the symptoms below, seek medical attention.

  • High fever
  • Headache
  • Chills
  • Muscle aches
  • Vomiting
  • Jaundice (yellow skin and eyes)
  • Red eyes
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Rash

Dr. Kimmelstiel notes leptospirosis is treatable and there is also a vaccine available for dogs and cats that is "very protective" and he explains it greatly reduces how sick a pet will get if they become infected.

Get more information about leptospirosis in pets and leptospirosis in humans.

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