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Leptospirosis (or lepto) is a very serious bacterial disease spread by wildlife and domestic animals, such as raccoons, skunks, opossums, squirrels, rats, and dogs. It is a zoonotic disease, which means it can be passed from animals to people. Lepto, dramatically on the rise in recent years, has been diagnosed in all types, breeds, and sizes of dogs.

Lepto bacteria are shed in urine. Dogs become infected when they come into contact with fresh urine from infected animals. Infection occurs when dogs wade through or drink water from contaminated water sources. The bacteria can enter through a cut in the skin or mucous membranes, such as the eye, nose, or mouth.

Common symptoms of lepto include fever, vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea and/or lethargy. Early recognition is vital for a full recovery.

Steps can be taken to lower the risk of your dog contacting lepto…….

Remove food, garbage, and nesting meterials from your yard to minimize wildlife activity.

Discourage your dog from drinking from standing water.

Talk to your veterinarian about his opinion of preventative vaccine.

Copyright: Fort Dodge Animal Health

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