The American Veterinarian Medical Association (AVMA) released updated information on Friday about the current investigation into the mysterious illnesses and death affecting several dogs in the Cincinnati and Akron areas of Ohio.
In a podcast from the AVMA, Ohio State Veterinarian Dr. Tony Forshey discusses the symptoms, the investigation, and how experts are proceeding in order to identify the reasons for the deaths of four dogs and four other dogs reported to have become ill.
All of the dogs presented with similar symptoms of severe vomiting, bloody diarrhea, lethargy, and fluid in their lungs.
According to Dr. Forshey, a necropsy of the dead dogs at Ohio State University ruled out certain viruses and bacterial infections including E coli and 20 different bacterial agents that could cause similar symptoms. Blood and stool samples gathered in panels continue to test for any viral or bacterial organisms, however cultures grow very slowly, and it may take weeks or months to identify the causes.
A possible link to the newly emerging canine virus, circovirus which has only been detected in pigs, has been thought to be involved, however only one of the dogs that died tested positive for circovirus; the other three dogs tested negative.
Part of the detailed process into this investigation involved looking into salmonella after the recent recalls of pet foods as well as parvovirus. None of the dogs had been fed any of the recalled dog foods.
What may be suspected now is that a co-infection may be causing vasculitis which has shown up in a few of the dogs resulting in vascular damage and skin loss. Vasculitis is a term for a group of diseases that feature the inflammation of the blood vessels; involving both the arteries and veins.
Dr. Forshey advises any pet owner to immediately contact their veterinarian if their dog shows any symptoms or acts abnormally. Veterinarians have been successful treating dogs with supportive and intravenous fluids.
He also advises being careful of strange dogs and use caution when exposing your dog to different venues. Until authorities get a firm hold on what is causing this illness in the dogs of Ohio, be safe rather than sorry.
The podcast will also be available beginning Monday, September 23, on iTunes via AVMA’s Animal Tracks feed (https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/avma-animal-tracks/id672386638), a free podcast series for pet owners addressing animal health and safety issues.
Many thanks to Michael San Filippo for this important information.
To read more about the onset of the mysterious Ohio illnesses to dogs, please click here.
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