Outbreak of Leptospirosis (Weils's) disease
You may have heard via the media or by word of mouth that a local Veterinary practice has diagnosed Leptospirosis in a number of dogs which have been vaccinated for the disease.
Leptospirosis is caused by a group of bacteria, with strains varying in different areas. Wild animals, mainly rats, carry Leptospirosis and it is shed via the urine and other bodily fluids. It can survive for some time in water. Dogs can become infected by exposure to contaminated water via ingestion or through wounds, exposure to urine e.g. contaminated food, bedding or soil, by bites or by eating infected animals. Humans are also at risk from this infection although surprisingly the condition is rare in cats.
Symptoms vary but include fever, decreased appetite, weakness, joint/muscle pain, increased frequency of urination leading to lack of urination, vomiting and diarrhoea, jaundice and sometimes in spite of treatment, death.
To date this practice has not seen any cases of Leptospirosis in either vaccinated or unvaccinated dogs, however in order to be proactive a supply of the latest Leptospirosis Vaccine which covers two more strains than our current vaccine has been sourced. Anyone concerned that their dog may be at risk can make an appointment to start the course of the new vaccine even if they have had the recent booster injection. The course consists of two injections four weeks apart. The cost for this course is £48.50. It must also be noted however that no vaccine is 100% effective.