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Canine Diseases, Worms and Parasites

By: Pug Puppy for Sale in Massachusetts

Canine Distemper - a widespread, often fatal viral disease. All dogs should be vaccinated against this deadly virus. This neurological disorder is one of the most feared canine diseases in the world. All dogs, even older ones, should be vaccinated.

Canine Adenovirus - (both type-1 & type-2) causes infectious hepatitis and respiratory infection. Hepatitis caused by adenovirus may cause severe liver damage or death. Adenovirus is, also an important factor in kennel cough.

Bordetella Brochiseptica (Canine Parianfluenza or Kennel Cough) - the most common bacteria implicated as a cause of respiratory disease in the canine. It is commonly involved in the development of canine cough. Frequently many patients within a household or kennel will be simultaneously infected.

If you board your pets you will need a more complete canine cough protection, vaccinate with a Bordetella containing vaccine.

Canine Leptospirosis - bacterial infection that may lead to permanent kidney damage. The disease is easily spread to other pets and to humans.

Note: Leptospirosis is a relatively rare disease that affects few dogs. Today, most people give vaccines without Lepto to puppies (those 12 weeks of age or less). It has been shown that the Lepto portion of vaccines may tie up a puppy's immune system somewhat and decrease their response to the rest of the vaccine. In the latter portion of the puppy's vaccinations schedule, vaccines with Lepto are used to protect against this disease.

Canine Parvovirus - a disease of widespread distribution which may cause severe dehydrating, diarrhea in dogs of varying ages. Parvovirus infection is especially dangerous for puppies.

Canine Coronavirus - a contagious intestinal disease causing vomiting and diarrhea in dogs of all ages. In areas where Coronavirus is a problem, I recommend vaccinating for this disease at 5, 7, 9, 12, 15, & 18 weeks of age, then yearly.

Lyme, a bacterial disease caused by Borrelia burgdorferi, may be spread through direct contact and by insects such as flies, fleas and ticks. Arthritic-like symptoms may occur. In areas where Lyme is a problem, we recommend vaccinating at 13 and 15 weeks of age, then yearly.

Rabies vaccination according to local law by your veterinarian.

Worms and Parasites

The Bitch should have her stool checked by a Vet or you ( if you own a microscope ) before she is due to be bred. Most worming medications are toxic and not safe during pregnancy. Many puppies are born with Roundworm infestation. This is due to the larvae which lay dormant in the dam and reactivate during pregnancy. Instructions on how to run a fecal analysis, using a microscope are at the bottom of this page.

Example: A female puppy is born with roundworms, she is then treated with the proper worm medications and now shows a negative stool. She is roundworm free, except larvae has enter her stomach and intestine lining, where they lay dormant. She matures to adulthood and is still worm free. She gets bred by a male who is also worm free. During her pregnancy the larvae in her lining of her stomach and intestines reactivate. She still is worm free but the larvae are passed from her milk to the puppies. The puppies now have Roundworms.

Roundworms are active in the intestines of puppies, often causing a pot-bellied appearance and poor growth. The worms may be seen in vomit or stool; a severe infestation can cause death by intestinal blockage. This worm can grow to seven inches in length. Females can produce 200 thousand eggs in a day, eggs that are protected by a hard shell and can exist in the soil for years. Dogs become infected by ingesting worm eggs from contaminated soil. The eggs hatch in the intestine and the resulting larva are carried to the lungs by the bloodstream. The larva then crawls up the windpipe and gets swallowed, often causing the pup to cough or gag. Once the larvae return to the intestine, they grow into adults.

Nemex 11 is a medication that treats both Round and Hookworm. Nemex11 is safe and can be administered as early as 2 weeks old. If given at 2 weeks of age, you can kill the adults before they have a chance to lay eggs. You will be able to break the worms breeding cycle and you may prevent your pups from developing a hook or roundworms infestation. Preventing is easier then curing. Note # Be careful when giving a 2 week old puppy liquids, they may choke and inhale the liquid into their lungs. If this happens hold the puppy upside down to help get the fluid out.

Hookworm are more serious and can be fatal. These are small, thin worms that fasten to the wall of the small intestine and suck blood. Dogs get hookworm if they come in contact with the larvae in contaminated soil. As with roundworms, the hookworm larvae becomes an adult in the intestine. The pups can contract hookworms in the uterus and the dam can infest the pups through her milk. Look for signs of anemia, white gums, listlessness and bloody stool.

Severe anemia may require blood transfusions.

If you find Tape then most likely you have or had fleas. Flea carry tapeworm. If you kill the tapeworm and you still have not killed the fleas, the tapeworm will come back. Tapes can be seen as pieces of white rice crawling on the anus or stool. This is usually a segment that has broken off of the adult tapeworm that is still living inside the pup.

Whip Worms
Adult whip worms look like pieces of thread with one end enlarged. They live in the cecum, the first section of the dog's large intestine. Infestations are usually light, so an examination of feces may not reveal the presence of eggs. Several checks may be necessary before a diagnosis can be made.

Coccidia use to be thought of as a parasite that only came from unclean kennels. Now we know it can be carried in by people, dogs and fleas. Adults don't always has symptoms and can be carriers of Coccidia. Symptoms are diarrhea, loss of appetite and listlessness. Blood appears in the stool and has a odd odor. It can lead to dehydration and death. If one puppy has it they all will, by fecal matter on the rectum and from stepping in another puppies fecal matter. Eventually it will spread to the whole house. Clean puppy cages often and bath all pups and adults daily until it is gone. Bleach is used to clean the kennel and grounds. Heavy Diarrhea can be treated with kaolin-pectin mixtures but by treating with Albon the diarrhea will cease after 1 -2 days treatment. Vets will prescribe Albon to cure the pups and adults. Coccidia can only be seen by a microscope.

Heart Worm
Just like most parasites, the heart worm goes through several life stages or cycles before emergence as an adult and needs at least two hosts to complete the cycle. The mosquito serves as the host for the larval stage of the worm, called microfilariae. The mosquito ingests the larva when it bites an infected dog and deposits its cargo in an uninfected dog when seeking another blood meal. The microfilariae burrow into the dog, and for three or four months, undergo several changes to reach adult form. They then travel to the right side of the heart through a vein and await the opportunity to reproduce. Adult heart worms can reach 12 inches in length and can remain in the dog's heart for several years. Female heart worms bear live young, thousands of them in a day. These young, the microfilariae circulate in the bloodstream for as long as three years, waiting to hitch a ride in a bloodsucking mosquito. They undergo changes in the mosquito that prepares them to infect the dog, and they transfer back to the original species the next time the mosquito bites. The process of change in the mosquito takes about 10 days in warm climates, but can take six weeks in colder temperatures. The worms grow and multiply, infesting the chambers on the right side of the heart and the arteries in the lungs. They can also lodge in the veins of the liver and the veins entering the heart. The first sign of heart worm infestation may not manifest for a year after infection, and even then the soft cough that increases with exercise may be dismissed as unimportant by the owner. But the cough worsens and the dog may actually faint from exertion; he tires easily , is weak and listless, loses weight and condition, and may cough up blood. Breathing becomes more difficult as the disease progresses. The progression is traumatic: the dog's quality of life diminishes drastically and he can no longer take a long walk in the park without respiratory distress. Congestive heart failure ensues, and the once-active, outgoing pet is in grave danger.


Blood Test
If a blood test or the onset of symptoms alert owner and veterinarian to the presence of this devastating parasite, treatment is possible and successful if the disease has not progressed too far. The first step is to evaluate the dog and treat any secondary problems of heart failure or liver or kidney insufficiency so that he can withstand the treatment. The next step is to kill the adult worms with an arsenic compound. The drug is administered in two doses each day for two days, followed by several weeks of inactivity to give the dog's system a chance to absorb the dead worms. Exertion can cause the dead worms to dislodge, travel to the lungs, and cause death. Owners should have their dogs tested for heart worm and placed on preventive. Heart worm preventive medications can be bought at any Vet. Doses can be given daily or monthly. Some of the drugs also rid the dog of other parasitic worms.

We all know what fleas are, and we all hate fleas.

Please read all flea medications carefully. Any flea product that is recommended by a Vet is best. Follow the directions exactly as your Vet recommends. If you do not treat all animals, your house and grounds, the way its directed, it will be useless and you will not get rid of the fleas.

Note: Whatever is safe for a kitten is good to use on a pup. Pert shampoo and Palmolive dish washing liquid kills fleas on young puppies.

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