Two dogs died in Plano from Leptospirosis in mid-October. What is it? It’s a bacterial disease that affects humans and animals. It’s more prevalent in dogs than cats but it can be transferred from animal to human. Rats, mice, raccoons, skunks, deer and other urban wildlife are the common carriers of Leptospirosis. It is very, very rare in bobcats. “Lepto” bacteria is spread when contact is made with urine, blood, etc. (not saliva) of an affected animal. The bacteria can survive for weeks in water, food or soil and it’s readily absorbed into the body. Walking through or drinking contaminated water can cause an infection. So pay attention to where your dog goes. Leptospirosis also kills.
To combat Leptospirosis you first control your environment. Try to keep the urban wildlife out. Wildlife needs food, water and shelter to survive. Remove all food sources, this includes taking down the bird feeders (for about a month or two), pick up the uneaten dog food, keep fresh water for outside pets, empty the birdbath and keep the acorns picked up. If you keep pet food in the garage put it in a steel container. If you have a swimming pool, well, good luck. This needs to be a group effort so make sure you talk to your neighbors about this.
Maintain the vaccinations for your pet. Wells Brothers sell a “5-way” puppy and a “10-way” adult dog vaccine along with Bordetella. The adult dog vaccine contains 4 strains of Leptospirosis protection and sells for $17.75. Everyone knows that no vaccination is 100% effective but it’s so much better to be proactive than reactive. So keep your dog vaccinated and check out all the dog food coupons on our website.