National 05/15/14 rfdtv.com: With all the recent storms and flooding, veterinarians are warning of a disease that spreads through water to both dogs and people. “The most important thing about leptospirosis is it’s a zoonotic disease so dogs can transmit the disease to people,” explained Dr. Ken Harkin, a veterinarian with Kansas State University. Harkin is an expert on leptospirosis. He says the bacterial disease can result in kidney failure and can be deadly to dogs. Symptoms of the disease, for both humans and dogs, include joint pain, weakness, vomiting and possibly jaundice.
The disease is spread through the urine of wild and domestic animals, and dogs and their owners can be exposed from the same source. “A great example, a few years ago we had a client who brought her dog in here with leptospirosis because their front yard had flooded and the raccoons had contaminated their front yard. Both the husband and the dog ended up in the hospital, obviously different hospitals. He has leptospirosis. The dog had leptospirosis. They both got it from the front yard from the raccoons, but certainly the dog could be a potential source for leptospirosis,” said Harkin. There is a vaccine available. Harkin advises to get your dog vaccinated if you live in an area where this disease is prevalent. – See http://www.rfdtv.com/story/24589387/about-us
National 05/14/14 news-medical.net: Dr. Kerry Clark, associate professor of public health at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville, and his colleagues have found additional cases of Lyme disease in patients from several states in the southeastern U.S. These cases include two additional Lyme disease Borrelia species recently identified in patients in Florida and Georgia. Overall, 42 percent of 215 patients from southern states tested positive for some Lyme Borrelia species. More than 90 cases of Lyme infection were confirmed among patients from Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia. Of these southern cases, 69 percent were found to have infection with B. burgdorferi, 22 percent with B. americana and 3 percent with B. andersonii. “For years, medical practitioners and the public have been told that Lyme disease is rare to nonexistent in the southern United States. Our earlier research demonstrated that Lyme disease bacteria were present in animals and ticks in our region,” said Clark. “The more recent evidence shows that the disease is also present in human patients in the South, and suggests that it’s common among patients presenting with signs and symptoms consistent with the clinical presentation of Lyme disease recognized in the northeastern part of the country.” His new paper, “Geographical and Genospecies Distribution of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato DNA Detected in Humans in the USA,” was published in the Journal of Medical Microbiology in February. Dr. Brian Leydet in the Department of Pathobiological Sciences at Louisiana State University and Dr. Clifford Threlkeld of Ameripath Central Florida collaborated with Clark in his latest research.
The findings are significant for several reasons. They provide additional evidence that multiple Lyme Borrelia species are associated with human disease in the U.S., similar to the situation in Europe. The new findings expand the geographic area where Lyme disease should be considered by medical providers and citizens alike, and suggest that human cases of Lyme disease in the southern U.S. may be much more common than previously recognized. Prior to Clark’s previously published paper in 2013, only one or two Lyme bacterial species, Borrelia burgdorferi and B. bissettii, were recognized to cause disease in North America. Current testing methods and interpretation criteria, designed to detect just one species (B. burgdorferi), may explain many of the complaints involving the unreliability of Lyme disease tests in the U.S. Most of the patients included in Clark’s study were suffering from a variety of chronic health problems, such as fatigue, headaches, muscle and joint pain and cognitive dysfunction. As a result, Clark’s research may help millions of chronically ill people living in areas where Lyme disease wasn’t previously recognized. Called “The New Great Imitator,” Lyme disease is often mistaken for illnesses such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, lupus, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, Lou Gehrig’s disease (ALS), Parkinson’s, ADHD and even Alzheimer’s. – For complete article see http://www.news-medical.net/news/20140514/UNF-Professor-discovers-2-Lyme-disease-bacterial-species-that-infect-human-patients.aspx
Colorado 05/16/14 9news.com: by Robert Garrison, KUSA – A coyote attacked a man and his dog walking on the CU-Boulder campus Thursday evening. University of Boulder police said it happened in a wooded area, southwest of Foothills Parkway and Arapahoe Avenue. The man reported that after focusing on them for some time, the coyote approached and eventually attacked his dog. The dog was on a leash and the man was able to pull the dog away from the attack. The coyote then lunged at the man, biting his left forearm as he reached out to block the coyote’s advance. The man was able to fend off the attack by kicking the coyote and swinging a stick as it retreated. – For complete article and precautions see http://www.9news.com/story/news/local/2014/05/16/coyote-attacks-man-dog-on-cu-campus/9190271/
Virginia 05/15/14 James City County: A cat that bit someone and a dog that scratched another person on Wednesday in two county neighborhoods are wanted by the Peninsula Health District for observation to ensure they aren’t rabid. A Siamese cat with blue eyes bit a person on Wednesday in the Black Heath area of Ford’s Colony, according to a press release. The cat has been seen in the area wearing a collar, but it was not wearing one at the time of the incident. The same day a black dog with a “pug-like” face weighing about 40 pounds scratched a person in the 3900 block of Powhatan Parkway in Powhatan Secondary, according to a separate release. The releases indicate, once found, both animals will be confined within their homes for a period of ten days. If they are not found, the victims will have to undergo post-exposure treatment for rabies prevention. Anyone who has seen an animal fitting either description is asked to call the Peninsula Health District – Williamsburg Environmental Health at 757-603-4277. After hours contact animal control at 757-253-1800.- See http://www.vagazette.com/news/va-vg-two-animals-sought-for-rabies-observation-20140515,0,1810898.story
Ontario 05/15/14 Grey Bruce Health Unit: by Janice MacKay – (Officials hope) to find the owner of a dog that bit a youth in Owen Sound. A young male was walking the large brown boxer type dog behind the Owen Sound Family YMCA on Tuesday at about 2:20pm, when it bit another youth. Health unit staff hope to confirm the dog is not infectious with rabies, so the victim can avoid post exposure rabies treatment. Anyone with information is asked to call 519-376-9420. – See http://blackburnnews.com/midwestern-ontario/midwestern-ontario-news/2014/05/15/owen-sound-boy-hopes-to-avoid-rabies-treatments/