The University of Guelph

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And now for something completely different… We’ve studied Clostridium difficile in my lab for years and we probably have one of the world’s most diverse collections of this important bacterium. We have thousands of isolates of the bacterium from people, pets, livestock and many different wildlife species (as well as from meat, vegetables and water).  Most of the focus on C. difficile involves human disease, something that makes sense because it’s a very important cause…
I’m taking a Brucella break so here are a few interesting rabies stories. More rabies in Nunavut A rabies warning was issued to residents of Taloyoak, Nunavut in response to identification of rabies in ‘a number’ of dogs and foxes (I’m not sure what that number is). It’s not new, and rabies is a concern is the territory. It’s also an issue for other areas in Canada since dogs are periodically shipped out of…
This is another one of those “I can’t say much specific because of privacy laws but there’s so much social media paranoia that I have to say something.” Is there concern about Brucella canis in Ontario? Yes. We have been concerned about this bacterium for a while, particularly in imported dogs and commercial breeders (including ‘puppy mills’). I can’t comment on the current situation more than to say we are investigating and I’m concerned but…
The whole situation with Echinococcus multilocularis, an important zoonotic tapeworm from dogs, is evolving and unclear in Canada (and probably the US). It’s becoming increasingly clear that the parasite is present in a high percentage of wild canids (e.g. coyotes, foxes) in some regions. What this means for human health isn’t clear yet. Echinococcus multilocularis is a small tapeworm that lives in the intestinal tracts of canids. People can become infected when they inadvertently ingest…
We often talk about rabies in the context of high GDP countries, focusing on wildlife rabies and exposure during travel. However, in many parts of the world, exposure to canine rabies is an ever-present risk, and there can be substantial barriers to getting proper post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) when needed. That’s part of the reason tens of thousands of people still die every year from canine rabies. A recent paper in Clinical Case Reports (Audu
The title says it all… see below for the latest and greatest infographics from the Ontario Animal Health Network, including an update to the very popular E. multilocularis infographic and a new one on treatment of feline upper respiratory tract infection.   To download the infographics in pdf format, visit oahn.ca at these links: Treatment of feline upper respiratory tract infection Emerging risk: Echinococcus multilocularis in Ontario  …
I’ve been holding off on this post because the situation is still evolving, but there’s enough of a rumour mill developing (and I’m getting enough emails from concerned people) that I thought I should respond. A little background: Brucella canis is a bacterium that can cause a variety of issues in dogs (particularly reproductive issues), and can also be transmitted to people. While it’s rare (well under 1%) in pet dogs in Canada and the…
Hot off the press… the newest edition of the International Society for Companion Animal Infectious Diseases (ISCAID) guidelines for the diagnosis and management of bacterial urinary tract infections in dogs and cats has been published in The Veterinary Journal. These are updated and expanded clinical guidelines that have been in the works for the past couple of years, as a followup to the initial 2011 guidelines. They are meant to be open access…
Here’s a report from Cornell University’s Animal Health Diagnostic Center, describing importation of a canine distemper strain that hasn’t been found before in North America: 02/05/2019: (N. America) In early October of 2018, a 12-week old “Sheltie” arrived from Korea. Approximately 12 days later, the dog began with a cough and lethargy with blood work indicating “anemia”. About 10 days later, the dog developed a unilateral myoclonus with relapsing lethargy. In another week the neurological…
Rabies and distemper are the two things that come to mind first when a raccoon is acting strangely. Rabies is a big concern because it can also be transmitted to people. Distemper is also a viral infection, caused by canine distemper virus, and is transmissible to dogs and some wildlife species, but is not zoonotic. Raccoons are very susceptible to distemper and infections and outbreaks are common. If raccoon rabies is present in the area,…