Anaplasmosis in Dogs: Symptoms and Treatment Methods

Anaplasmosis in dogs or infectious thrombocytopenia is a disease of bacterial origin. Its pathogens are microorganisms that damage the platelets of the animal, which are responsible for blood coagulability. This pathology is transmitted not only to dogs, but also to other animals, and insects are carriers of infection.


Stages of the disease and symptoms

Anaplasmosis in dogs

Anaplasmosis is transmitted through tick bites - the most severe form of the disease can infect a black-legged mite, the same disease obtained from a canine brown tick has less complex consequences. Because of the mode of transmission, outbreaks of infection are seasonal - in spring and in autumn.

There are three stages of anaplasmosis in dogs, and each differs in duration and symptoms:

  1. The first stage. It is acute and flows for 21 days after the tick was bitten. Penetrating into the body, pathogenic bacteria choose the place of localization of erythrocytes, less often they inhabit leucocytes and platelets. When there is an intensive proliferation of anaplasm, the immune mechanisms of the dog work and destroy the affected cells. The main symptom of this action is the acute form of anemia. Among other signs, the following can be noted:
  • the dog has an increase in lymph nodes;
  • the mucous membranes become yellow;
  • the pet has difficulty breathing;
  • circulatory processes are violated;
  • all this is accompanied by an increase in temperature .

Microscopic examination of the blood shows who the blood cells have changed in size, there is polychromasia and a violation in the activity of red blood cells. This period, although accompanied by many unpleasant conditions, is still not a threat to the life of the dog. Most of the diseased animals are cured at this stage, but sometimes the ailment goes to a more serious - subclinical form.

  1. The second stage. At this stage the animal looks quite healthy. Disease bacteria are located inside the spleen cells, and diagnostic examination often reveals an increase in this organ - splenomegaly. This stage is protracted and can last from a couple months to several years. To reveal anaplasmosis in this form is difficult, for this, in the first place, it is necessary to take a blood test. As a result, the presence of thrombocytopenia (reduced platelet count) will be indicated, as well as an increased number of globulins.
  2. The third stage. This stage signals that the disease has passed into a chronic form. Thrombocytopenia develops so much that most of the diseased dogs experience severe bleeding. Among the main signs of the appearance on the body of multiple hematomas, urine appears blood, very often the blood goes nose.

Naturally, it is important, as early as possible, to identify the disease and for its recognition help diagnosis.

Diagnosis of anaplasmosis in dogs

This disease refers to those ailments that are extremely difficult to diagnose only when assessing the clinical picture and external symptoms. If the veterinarian has the slightest doubt about the accuracy of the diagnosis, a number of procedures are prescribed. Effective results in the case of anaplasmosis can be obtained by submitting an enzyme immunoassay (briefly - ELISA) and evaluating the PCR - polymerase chain reaction.

At the peak of the disease for a professional, it is not difficult to examine pathogens through a microscope. Only comprehensive diagnostic measures can help to find out what caused the disease. But even here mistakes are possible, because by means of ticks another infection is transmitted that has a similarity to anaplasmosis in dogs - pyroplasmosis. Even the listed methods do not always distinguish, what for an illness at a dog.

Differential diagnostics in this case consists in evaluating the reaction of the animal's organism to the prescribed treatment. If the therapy against pyroplasmosis does not improve the dog, then apply the treatment against anaplasm.

Often, dogs are infected with two types of bacterial infection simultaneously, and then therapy is applied directly from two pathogens.

Treatment of anaplasmosis in dogs

Treatment of anaplasmosis in dogs

Therapy of anaplasmosis, as well as with similar infections, which carry the tick (for example, tick-borne barreliosis, erlichiosis) is the administration of a drug-antibiotic Doxycycline. Many infected pets undergo a one-month course of this remedy.

If the treatment of anaplasmosis in a dog is prescribed in a timely manner, the pet gets rid of unpleasant symptoms on the first day, less often two days after the start of taking the antibiotic. In this case, veterinarians give very positive predictions for the further condition of the animal.

But even with a significant improvement in the clinical picture, there are certain difficulties in ascertaining whether there is an infection in the body or not, are present. If the dog no longer produces antibodies against β-staphylococci, then there are no pathogens left in the body.

It will not work out with the help of the blood test, because even if it is fully recovered, it can give positive results. It is because of this uncertainty that doctors often take care of themselves and prescribe a second course of drugs so that the analysis gives a negative answer.

Preventive actions against anaplasmosis

Naturally, every owner of the dog wants, if possible, to protect his pet from such unpleasant diseases. How can this be done?

At once it is necessary to specify, that the preventive vaccine against anaplasmosis in dogs does not exist. Therefore, it is necessary to resort to other methods. To this end, long-acting agents with repellent properties are used that repel insects, including ticks. By the way, they are well tolerated by animals. You can buy special drops, impregnated with substances collar. Modern means can not only scare away, but also destroy the tick.

Recommendations of specialists and features of the disease

Can a person get anaplasmosis from a pet

Experienced breeders and veterinarians can give some useful advice, which should listen to the novice breeders:

  • It is not necessary to wait for the season of mites, to treat the pet by special means better two or three weeks before it. Also do not forget to repeat these manipulations from time to time. On the terms of re-processing, there is information on the preparations themselves and products.
  • After the walk it is necessary to examine the dog for presence on the skin and in the wool of insects, rapid detection of the tick significantly reduces the risks of complications. In general, the mite does not immediately suck in to the skin and infection occurs, it is long enough - 12-16 hours can only get to the site of the bite.
  • To remove the insect bite, with a certain skill, it is possible and at home, using for this purpose a special device in the form of a hook. But if there is no experience, it is better to seek help from a vet clinic. Sometimes timely assistance can not only save the dog from the trouble of the disease, but also save lives.

Doctors warn that mites are carriers of many diseases, and one such small insect can infect a pet with several infections at once. Naturally, if anaplasmosis occurs with erlichiosis or another similar disease, and not one, the prognosis may be disappointing.

The risks of infection increase during walks in the area with high vegetation, grass and shrubs are a favorite place for ticks.

Can an individual get anaplasmosis from his pet

Of course, the issue is very important, because dogs often live at home, contact with children. Studies have shown that anaplasm can penetrate into the human body and develop there. However, there is not a single recorded case of transmission of this bacterium from the animal to humans, and infection between animals is not recorded anywhere. Specialists, of course, do not exclude such a possibility, but consider such an option unlikely.

It should be noted that the presence of ticks in the dog is a signal that in the environment is unsafe, including for people. In this case, measures are usually taken to eliminate the threat by treating the vegetation with acaricidal means. Such activities are mandatory for health institutions, recreation parks, open-air museums.

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