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About Anaplasmosis in Dogs

Anaplasmosis is just one of the tick-borne diseases putting the health of pets and people at risk across the USA. In today's post, our Jackson vets explain the symptoms of Anaplasmosis in dogs, possible long-term effects, and how this potentially serious disease can be treated.

What is anaplasmosis in dogs?

Anaplasmosis is an illness caused by a bacterium named Anaplasma phagocytophilum, transmitted through the bite of infected ticks such as the black-legged tick (also known as deer tick) or brown dog tick. This potentially severe condition is prevalent throughout the United States, with higher rates reported in the Midwest, West Coast, and Northeast regions.

Is there such a thing as asymptomatic anaplasmosis in dogs?

While some dogs with Anaplasmosis may not exhibit any symptoms, the most common signs resemble those of a severe flu. Symptoms may include:

  • Lethargy
  • Pain
  • Fever
  • Loss of appetite
  • Bloody nose
  • Lameness
  • Joint pain
  • diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Cough
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Seizures
  • Meningitis
  • Ataxia
  • Chills

If your dog is showing any of the symptoms listed above a trip to the vet is essential. Undiagnosed anaplasmosis in Dogs can lead to serious health complications. Long-term effects of anaplasmosis in dogs include respiratory failure, organ failure, and bleeding issues. In very severe cases, Anaplasmosis can be fatal for dogs.

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Does anaplasmosis go away in dogs?

If your dog shows any symptoms associated with Anaplasmosis, it is crucial to seek veterinary care promptly. Left untreated, this condition can lead to severe complications, including respiratory and organ failure, and even prove fatal in some cases.

How is Anaplasmosis diagnosed in dogs?

Diagnosing Anaplasmosis can be challenging due to its vague symptoms, which can overlap with other diseases. Providing your veterinarian with comprehensive information about your dog's whereabouts and potential tick exposure is essential for an accurate diagnosis. Initial symptoms typically manifest between two to four weeks post-tick bite.  To diagnose Anaplasmosis, your veterinarian will conduct a thorough physical examination and may perform an antibody test to detect Anaplasma phagocytophilum bacteria.

What is the treatment for Anaplasmosis in dogs?

Anaplasmosis in dogs can be effectively treated with antibiotics such as Doxycycline, Minocycline, Tetracycline, or Chloramphenicol. Most dogs show improvement within 24-48 hours after commencing antibiotic treatment.

Can I prevent my dog from developing Anaplasmosis?

Preventative measures include administering tick prevention medication year-round, avoiding tick-infested areas like long grass and brush, and conducting daily tick checks on your dog. Prompt tick removal is crucial to prevent disease transmission.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If you have concerns about your dog's health, please contact our veterinary team inJackson to schedule a check-up. For urgent care outside regular hours, please contact the nearest emergency veterinarian.

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