Brucellosis in a dog, raw meat origin

My friend Scott Weese wrote this up in his Worms and Germs Blog so I don’t have to.

˙(I still miss Sadie, who we had to relo˙cate before we moved to Australia).

A recent report from the Netherlands in Emerging Infectious Diseases (van Dijk et al 2018) describes a new twist on raw feeding concerns, Brucella suis infection. For the full details, you can read the whole paper here, but the short version of the story is outlined below.

The dog had fever, ascites (fluid free in the abdomen) and inflammation of the testicles, and after failing to respond to antibiotics, it was taken to surgery. At surgery, culture samples were collected from the epididymis (tissue adjacent to the testicle). Brucella suis was identified, which presumably caused a bit stir in the lab and clinic since that bacterium is a rarely identified, poses risks to people and is notifiable (the government has to be contacted when it’s found). Ultimately, the dog was euthanized after failing to respond to further treatment.

Because this is a notifiable disease, there was an investigation. The dog’s raw, rabbit-based diet became the leading potential source and Brucella suis was identified in samples from a 30,000 kg batch of raw rabbit imported from Argentina, a country where B. suis is present.

It’s a single case report so we can’t get too worked up about it, but it’s noteworthy for a couple reasons.

One is the disease…brucellosis is a nasty disease. It can be hard to treat, is potentially zoonotic and sometimes results in public health-mandated euthanasia of the dog.

Another is the importation aspect. The dog wasn’t imported but the bacterium was, via food. We’re trying to get increasing awareness of the need to query travel and importation history, since that can impact disease risks. Querying diet origins is tougher, since, while most people would know where their dog has been in the past few weeks, they may not know much about where their dog’s diet has been. With commercial processed food, it’s not a big deal but with a higher risk food like raw meat, importing food can be similar to the dog visiting the country of origin, from a disease standpoint. With raw meat, knowing where the meat came from and the disease risks in those areas may be important, but that’s not often easy to find.

The incidence of disease in dogs and cats associated with raw meat feeding ins’t clear and is probably low. Nevertheless, I recommend avoiding raw meat feeding, especially in  high risk households (e.g. with elderly individuals, kids <5 yrs of age, pregnant women or immunocompromised individuals). However, if raw meat is to be fed, some basic practices can be taken to reduce the risk, as we outline in the info sheet in our Resources section.

It’s all about poop: Argument over dog feces leads to stabbing, three arrests in Connecticut

Further to the dog poop storyline, an argument over dog feces turned violent Saturday morning and led to the arrests of three Bridgeport men.

According to a shift end report from Bridgeport police, officers responded at about 8:30 a.m. to the 1100 block of Park Avenue for “a large fight.”

When they arrived, officers found two men and a dog with minor stab wounds.

According to the report, Kirk Brown got into an altercation with Christian Rodriguez when Rodriguez allowed his dog to go to the bathroom near Brown’s residence. At some point, officers reported a third man, Ryan Bray, who was friends with Rodriguez, also joined the fight.

During the altercation, police said Brown brandished a “small knife” and stabbed Rodriguez and Bray. The dog was also stabbed, police said.

All three men were taken into custody.

Spring thaw leaves Canadian crusaders steaming over poop

A seasonal scourge prompts dog groomer Anne Dopson to tackle the neighbourhoods of Terrace, B.C. with a shovel at the first signs of melting snow.

In anticipation of this year’s thaw, Dopson adopted a strict anti-excrement regimen, plastering posters around town and even handing out scoops and garbage bags to her fellow canine lovers. 

But nothing seems to rid Terrace of the smelly brown mess revealed each spring.

“It’s right on the road, the side of the road,” sighed Dopson. 

“It’s almost like people just park there, open their doors and let their dogs out to do their business, and then they come back in. It gets on dogs’ paws, on people’s footwear, and they track that home.”

Persistent piles of poop aren’t just an assault on the senses, says Erin Fraser, a public health veterinarian with the B.C. Centre for Disease Control.

“E. coli is often prevalent in dog feces,” which thrives alongside salmonella and assorted parasites, she told CBC Radio’s Carolina de Ryk.

And the feces itself is everywhere this time of year, Fraser adds. “The volume of dog waste can be staggering, and communities all over Canada struggle with how best to address this issue.”

Post-Thanksgiving thanks — daily

Now that Thanksgiving is over, and bloated Americans are returning to work Monday thinking Donald Trump is going to be president, it’s prime time to step away from the food and shopping orgy and consider the things we’re thankful for, on a daily basis, not because some American president (FDR) declared it would be the fourth Thursday in Nov.

sorenne-tedI like my parents and sister who still talk with me although I’ve been sortofa dick for a long time.

I like Amy, and Sorenne, and the other 4 daughters, who still talk with me, and some even live with me, although I’ve been sortofa dick for a long time.

My friends, and their spouses, who still talk with me, although I’ve been sortofa dick for a long time.

I like coaching hockey.

I’m thankful our hockey club – or at least me – is going to focus on the club rather than the individual.

I like the new dog, Ted, (size due to townhouse body corporate regs).

I like that Australians are sorta dumb about Thanksgiving  (Australia, you’re an agricultural exporting country, it’s a celebration of the fucking harvest).

I’m thankful I didn’t make anyone barf at our annual Thanksgiving feast (it’s real easy to screw up cooking turkey for 50 people).

And, after five years, I can now say, I’m thankful I live in Brisbane.

Beaches are awesome.

So are the people.

Plenty to be thankful for — every day.

Dogs, cats, pigeons in sight for hungry Venezuelans

As the economy spirals into deeper disarray, protests aimed at driving unpopular Venezuelans president Nicolás Maduro out of office are growing. Maduro responded over the weekend by declaring a 60-day state of emergency to combat what he said are U.S.-sponsored efforts to overthrow his socialist government.

hambre-en-VenezuelaPeter Wilson of USA Today reports the unrest mounts as the country faces continuing shortages of essential food, medicine and toiletries. All the bakeries here in La Victoria, 55 miles southwest of Caracas, stopped producing bread last week because there is no flour.

“People are hunting dogs and cats in the streets, and pigeons in the plazas to eat,” Ramon Muchacho, mayor of the Caracas district of Chacao, said this month in a tweet that was reported in many newspapers.

An epic drought has also gripped this nation that relies mostly on hydroelectric dams, sparking rolling blackouts and water shortages. Hospitals have had to postpone operations and procedures because of power outages. And government employees now work only two days a week to conserve electricity.

 

Do it in the country, like it just fine, do it on the city, $20 fine

Goodyear Police in Arizona arrested CBS 5 journo Jonathan Lowe Monday afternoon while he was on assignment, reporting on a former Arizona State University football player who allegedly sacrificed the family dog by putting him in a smoker in order to appease an angry God.

poo-emoji-collectionThat doesn’t begin to explain the kind of day Lowe was having, however.

“Lowe chose to use the front yard of a residence to relieve himself,” Goodyear Police Department spokeswoman Lisa Kutis tells New Times. “An onlooker from across the street called it in to officers. They approached him, he said he’d had to relieve himself, and they arrested him.”

Lowe was handcuffed and taken to the Goodyear Police station, where he was booked, cited, and released. Kutis says Lowe was cited under Goodyear code violation 11-1-30, “public urination or defecation,” a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $2,500 or six months in jail. 

Goodyear police haven’t released the arrest report, but the department confirms that the citation was for defecation. Kutis says the arrest took place at about 3:10 p.m., and that at the time various media outlets had been “in the neighborhood of the home where the dog incident took place.”

News of Lowe’s arrest was reported by TV news industry gossip site FTVLive.com, which published a photo of the reporter being taken away in handcuffs beneath the headline “Cops Bust the Potty Reporter.” A subsequent article on the site claimed Lowe’s arrest “was the talk inside the Phoenix newsrooms” and that “two competing stations had video of Lowe being lead [sic] away.” 

Bizarrely, there was no further news about the former football player who smoked the dog to appease God.

Artificial sweetener, Xylitol, risk to dogs

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, sugarless gum may contain xylitol, a class of sweetener known as sugar alcohol. Xylitol is present in many products and foods for human use, but can have devastating effects on your pet.

sadie.dog.powellOver the past several years, the Center for Veterinary Medicine at FDA has received several reports—many of which pertained to chewing gum—of dogs being poisoned by xylitol, according to Martine Hartogensis, a veterinarian at FDA.

But gum isn’t the only product containing xylitol. Slightly lower in calories than sugar, this sugar substitute is also often used to sweeten sugar-free candy, such as mints and chocolate bars. Other products that may contain xylitol include:

  • breath mints
  • baked goods
  • cough syrup
  • children’s and adult chewable vitamins
  • mouthwash
  • toothpaste

In both people and dogs, the level of blood sugar is controlled by the release of insulin from the pancreas. In people, xylitol does not stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas. However, it’s different in canines: When dogs eat something containing xylitol, the xylitol is more quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, and may result in a potent release of insulin from the pancreas.

This rapid release of insulin may result in a rapid and profound decrease in the level of blood sugar (hypoglycemia), an effect that can occur within 10 to 60 minutes of eating the xylitol. Untreated, this hypoglycemia can quickly be life-threatening, Hartogensis says.

Symptoms of xylitol poisoning in dogs include vomiting, followed by symptoms associated with the sudden lowering of your dog’s blood sugar, such as decreased activity, weakness, staggering, incoordination, collapse and seizures.

If you think your dog has eaten xylitol, take him to your vet or an emergency animal hospital immediately, Hartogensis advises. Because hypoglycemia and other serious adverse effects may not occur in some cases for up to 12 to 24 hours, your dog may need to be monitored.

(A note to cat owners: The toxicity of xylitol for cats has not been documented. They appear to be spared, at least in part, by their disdain for sweets.)

10 dead, 100 sickened by rotten dog meat in Cambodia

Six people died earlier in the week after eating the barbecued carcass of a dog believed to have been found by a roadside.

dog.meat.cambodiaFour others from the same remote village in the Kratié (or Kraches) province in the northeast of the country later died after consuming the meat as well as drinking rice wine on Tuesday.

The deaths began on Sunday after a 76-year-old man died several hours after cooking and eating the dead dog. 

In a zen-like twist, guests at his funeral, which was held the following day, also ate the leftover dog meat and were rushed to the hospital with acute food poisoning.

The deaths are in region of Cambodia where canines are regarded as a delicacy.

Doggy hardware: Friendly policy questioned after dog bites girl at Australian outlet

Bunnings is the Home Depot of Australia.

I’ve always been a fan of doggy dining, where canines can accompany folks to a restaurant, but only with a bunch of caveats:

  • only outside;
  • management can decide whenever they want to evict a dog; and,
  • the adults involved aren’t entitled douchebags.

bunningsJust days after the popular home improvement chain confirmed that customers were now allowed to take their pooches inside stores, a Melbourne child has allegedly been bitten on the leg.

Five-year-old Madeline Hungerford is recovering at home after an incident at the Bunnings store in Melton yesterday.

“We just don’t think dogs should be there,” Ms Hungerford told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell this morning.

“Bunnings on a Sunday is really busy … It’s just not a good environment for a dog.”

She said the family had been walking through the store when their little girl was set upon.

“We were walking past two little dogs, one was being patted at the time and Madeline tried to pat the other one,” Ms Hungerford said.

But before her little girl could get within patting range, she said, the dog — believed to be a Jack Russell terrier — allegedly bit her on the leg.

“It’s broken the skin just below her knee,” she said.

“She’s got two bite marks that broke the skin, a couple of bite marks around the side and bruising and swelling.”

dogs.playing.poker.velvetIn a cruel twist of fate, Madeline had only just become comfortable around dogs when the incident occurred.

News.com.au revealed on Thursday Bunnings had unveiled a new policy of welcoming pets into stores.

Bunnings operations director Michael Schneider then said that while customers weren’t being encouraged to bring pets inside, “as long as pets are under appropriate control, are not aggressive and do not compromise the safety of our team or customers they are welcome”.

“Our team members have full discretion to deny any pet entry to the store,” he said, adding that assistance animals “have always been and will always be allowed entry into our stores”.

While a majority of readers supported the move in an online poll, some expressed concern.

Your chewing gum is making your dog sick

If Snopes and scientific studies aren’t enough, perhaps reports at the Wall Street Journal, CBS News, and Nature World News can sway you: A sugar substitute found in chewing gum and other everyday food and household items can make dogs sick and even kill them.

sadie.dog.powellVeterinary experts say xylitol—also used in toothpaste, gummy vitamins, some peanut butters, and breath mints—is about 100 times as toxic as milk chocolate to dogs, and it’s being blamed for an uptick in accidental pup poisonings, say animal poison-control centers. The ASPCA’s poison center, for instance, received more than 3,700 xylitol-related calls last year, with nearly a dozen deaths. And a toxicologist from the Pet Poison Helpline says it’s seen a “dramatic increase” in calls related to the sweetener, with only 300 in 2009, but 2,800 so far this year.

The problem xylitol poses for dogs is it causes a sudden surge of insulin after they eat it, which makes blood pressure plummet, possibly resulting in seizures, brain damage, or liver failure. And it takes just a small amount: As little as 50 milligrams of the sweetener per pound of body weight can be toxic, so even one or two pieces of gum can make a small dog ill.