Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (2024)

IN THIS TOPIC

OTHER TOPICS IN THIS CHAPTER

Introduction to Digestive Disorders of Dogs Congenital and Inherited Disorders of the Digestive System of Dogs Dental Development of Dogs Dental Disorders of Dogs Disorders of the Mouth in Dogs Disorders of the Pharynx (Throat) in Dogs Disorders of the Esophagus in Dogs Vomiting in Dogs Disorders of the Stomach and Intestines in Dogs Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs Gastrointestinal Parasites of Dogs Disorders Caused by Protozoa in the Digestive System of Dogs Pancreatitis and Other Disorders of the Pancreas in Dogs Disorders of the Liver and Gallbladder in Dogs Disorders of the Rectum and Anus in Dogs

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (1)

Pet Owner Version

By

Alicja E. Tabor

, BSc, PhD, Centre for Animal Science, Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation, The University of Queensland;


Walter Grünberg

, DVM, PhD, DECAR, DECBHM, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Justus-Liebig-Universität Giessen, Giessen, Germany;


Thomas W. Swerczek

, DVM, PhD, Department of Veterinary Science, University of Kentucky

Reviewed/Revised May 2018 | Modified Oct 2022

  • Campylobacter Infection
  • Helicobacter Infection
  • Salmonella Infection
  • Tyzzer Disease

Certain bacteria may cause gastrointestinal disease in dogs. The most common of these are discussed below.

Campylobacter Infection

Gastrointestinal campylobacteriosis is a bacterial disease. It is caused by related bacteria of the Campylobacter and Arcobacter genera. These organisms, along with a number of other species of Campylobacter, can be isolated from infected dogs that do not show signs of infection (carriers) as well as from dogs that show signs of the illness. This disease can be transmitted to humans. Animals, including dogs (especially those recently adopted from shelters), and wild animals maintained in captivity can serve as sources of human infection.

Exposure to feces of infected animals and food- or waterborne transmission appear to be the most common routes of infection. One suspected source of infection for pets and people is eating undercooked poultry and other raw meat or dairy products. Wild birds also may be important sources of water contamination.

Typical signs include mucus-laden, watery, or bile-streaked diarrhea (with or without blood). Fever may also be present. Intermittent diarrhea may persist for more than 2 weeks; in some, the intermittent diarrhea may continue for months. The diarrhea appears to be most severe in young dogs. The bacteria may also cause a pregnant dog to miscarry her unborn puppies. To diagnose campylobacteriosis, a veterinarian will test the animal’s feces and blood for evidence of infection.

To choose an appropriate antibiotic, veterinarians must determine which species of Campylobacter or Arcobacter is present. Unfortunately, some dogs will remain as carriers for the bacteria even after antibiotic treatment. Therefore, cleaning of the environment and frequently testing of the stool is necessary.

Also see professional content regarding campylobacter infection Enteric Campylobacteriosis in Animals Campylobacter spp cause GI disease in humans and several animal species. Although Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli are the best-characterized species within the... read more .

Helicobacter Infection

In humans, Helicobacter pylori bacteria have been associated with stomach inflammation, ulcers, and stomach cancer. Although H. pylori has not been found in dogs, several other species of Helicobacter have been isolated. So far, it is not known whether the bacteria causes inflammation in the stomach. It is rarely associated with gastrointestinal ulcers. Whether their presence predisposes the infected animal to food allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, or cancer is also not yet known. All of the dogs in some studies tested positive for Helicobacter infections.

Several tests, including biopsy of the stomach lining, may be used by your veterinarian to diagnose the presence of the bacteria. Confirming the diagnosis requires culturing the bacteria in a laboratory. Several types of antibiotics have been used to treat the infection in dogs. In many cases, however, the bacteria recur. Whether this is due to reinfection or failure of the antibiotics to completely eliminate them following treatment is not known. Some dogs vomited less after treatment, even when the bacteria remained.

It is possible that dogs could pass Helicobacter species to humans. Although the extent of the risk is unknown, it is prudent for pet owners to practice good hygiene (e.g,.washing hands after petting a dog and not allowing a dog to lick a person's face).

Also see professional content regarding Helicobacter infection Helicobacter Infection in Small Animals Helicobacter spp are commonly isolated from the stomachs of dogs and cats, but their pathogenicity in pets is not clearly established. Diagnosis requires cytologic or histologic examination... read more .

Salmonella Infection

Many species of Salmonella bacteria can cause gastrointestinal illness. A Salmonella infection can cause severe blood poisoning (septicemia) or inflammation of the intestine. The disease is infrequent in dogs. Infected dogs are often carriers of Salmonella: they do not show any signs of disease but can intermittently spread it to others.

When disease is seen, it is often associated with hospitalization, another infection or disease in adult dogs, or exposure to large numbers of the bacteria in puppies. Signs include sudden diarrhea and blood poisoning. Pneumonia may be evident. Salmonella infection is likely to cause miscarriage in pregnant dogs. Diagnosis is based on signs of disease and on the laboratory examination of feces or tissues.

Early treatment is essential for blood poisoning. In many cases, antibiotics are given intravenously. Fluids may be given intravenously as well. The intestinal form of the disease is difficult to treat effectively. Antibiotics are not always recommended, due to concerns about the development of antibiotic resistant bacteria, as well as concerns about the effects of antibiotics on normal intestinal bacteria of dogs. Although the signs of disease may disappear, eliminating the bacteria from the body is difficult, particularly in adult dogs.

Because of the above problems, it is particularly important to follow your veterinarian’s directions carefully if your pet is infected with Salmonella. The medication selected and both the timing of the doses and the duration of treatment are important in eliminating the infection.

Salmonella can be transmitted from dogs to humans, so care should be taken to avoid contact with feces from an infected dog.

Also see professional content regarding salmonella infection Salmonellosis in Animals Salmonellosis is infection with Salmonella spp bacteria. It affects most animal species as well as humans and is a major public health concern. The clinical presentation can range from... read more .

Tyzzer Disease

Tyzzer disease is an infection caused by the bacterium Clostridium piliforme. It affects a wide range of animals; however, the disease is rare in dogs. Infection most likely results from oral exposure to infective spores from the environment or contact with affected or carrier animals. The bacteria primarily affect cells in the intestine, liver, and heart. The disease most often affects young, healthy animals that are subjected to stress. In some species, the disease occurs along with other diseases, such as distemper and mycotic pneumonia in dogs.

Signs vary, but may include decreased activity, loss of appetite, fever, jaundice, and diarrhea. Before death, there are convulsions and coma. A diagnosis of Tyzzer disease is based on laboratory examination of feces or tissue samples for the presence of the bacteria. Blood tests can also be used to look for the presence of antibodies against the bacteria. Little is known about the effectiveness of antibiotics for treatment; some antibiotics are known to aggravate the disease. Dogs suspected of being infected may be treated with intravenous fluids and appropriate antibiotics.

Also see professional content regarding Tyzzer disease Tyzzer Disease in Animals Tyzzer disease is caused by Clostridium piliforme. The disease affects a variety of animals, including mammals and birds. It is characterized by a triad of lesions that include colitis... read more .

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (5)

Copyright © 2023 Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA and its affiliates. All rights reserved.

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (6)

Test your knowledge

Take a Quiz!

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (7)

iOSANDROID

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (8)

iOSANDROID

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (9)

iOSANDROID

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (10)

Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA(known as MSD outside of the US and Canada) is dedicated to using the power of leading-edge science to save and improve lives around the world. The Merck Veterinary Manual was first published in 1955 as a service to the community. The legacy of this great resource continues as the Merck Veterinary Manual in the US and Canada and the MSD Vet Manual outside of North America.

  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (11)
  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (12)
  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (13)
  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (14)

  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (16)
  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (17)
  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (18)
  • Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (19)

Copyright © 2023 Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, NJ, USA and its affiliates. All rights reserved.

As an expert and enthusiast, I have access to a wide range of information on various topics. While I don't have personal experiences or credentials like a human expert, I can provide you with accurate and reliable information based on the sources I have access to. I'll do my best to address the concepts mentioned in the article you provided.

Digestive Disorders of Dogs

Digestive disorders in dogs can be categorized into different types, including congenital and inherited disorders, dental disorders, disorders of the mouth, pharynx, esophagus, stomach, and intestines, as well as disorders caused by bacteria and parasites in the digestive system. Some specific disorders mentioned in the article include Campylobacter infection, Helicobacter infection, Salmonella infection, and Tyzzer disease.

Campylobacter Infection

Campylobacter infection, also known as gastrointestinal campylobacteriosis, is a bacterial disease that affects dogs and can also be transmitted to humans. It is caused by bacteria from the Campylobacter and Arcobacter genera. Dogs infected with Campylobacter may show signs of illness such as mucus-laden, watery, or bile-streaked diarrhea, fever, and intermittent diarrhea that can persist for weeks or months. Pregnant dogs may also miscarry their unborn puppies due to this infection. The infection can be diagnosed by testing the dog's feces and blood for evidence of infection. Treatment involves the use of appropriate antibiotics, although some dogs may remain carriers of the bacteria even after treatment. Cleaning the environment and frequent testing of stool samples are necessary to prevent the spread of the infection .

Helicobacter Infection

Helicobacter infection in dogs is caused by species of bacteria from the Helicobacter genus. While Helicobacter pylori, which is associated with stomach inflammation, ulcers, and stomach cancer in humans, has not been found in dogs, other species of Helicobacter have been isolated from dogs. The effects of these bacteria on dogs are not yet fully understood, and it is unclear whether they cause stomach inflammation, gastrointestinal ulcers, or other conditions like food allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, or cancer. Diagnosis of Helicobacter infection in dogs involves tests such as biopsy of the stomach lining and culturing the bacteria in a laboratory. Treatment with antibiotics may be used, although recurrence of the infection is possible. It is also important for pet owners to practice good hygiene to minimize the risk of transmission from dogs to humans.

Salmonella Infection

Salmonella infection is caused by various species of bacteria from the Salmonella genus. While the disease is infrequent in dogs, infected dogs can become carriers of Salmonella and intermittently spread it to others. Symptoms of Salmonella infection in dogs include sudden diarrhea, blood poisoning (septicemia), and pneumonia. Pregnant dogs infected with Salmonella are at risk of miscarriage. Diagnosis is based on signs of disease and laboratory examination of feces or tissues. Early treatment is essential for blood poisoning, and antibiotics may be given intravenously. However, antibiotics are not always recommended for the intestinal form of the disease due to concerns about antibiotic resistance and effects on normal intestinal bacteria. Eliminating the bacteria from the body can be challenging, particularly in adult dogs. Pet owners should take precautions to avoid contact with feces from infected dogs to prevent transmission to humans.

Tyzzer Disease

Tyzzer disease is an infection caused by the bacterium Clostridium piliforme. While the disease is rare in dogs, it can affect a wide range of animals. In dogs, Tyzzer disease is most likely to occur in young, healthy animals subjected to stress. The bacteria primarily affect cells in the intestine, liver, and heart. Symptoms of Tyzzer disease in dogs may include decreased activity, loss of appetite, fever, jaundice, diarrhea, convulsions, and coma. Diagnosis involves laboratory examination of feces or tissue samples for the presence of the bacteria. Treatment may include intravenous fluids and appropriate antibiotics, although the effectiveness of antibiotics is not well-established. Some antibiotics may even aggravate the disease. Preventive measures and supportive care are important in managing Tyzzer disease in dogs .

Please note that the information provided is a summary of the concepts mentioned in the article. For more detailed information, it is always best to consult veterinary professionals or trusted sources in the field of veterinary medicine.

Disorders Caused by Bacteria in the Digestive System of Dogs - Dog Owners - Merck Veterinary Manual (2024)

References

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Eusebia Nader

Last Updated:

Views: 5636

Rating: 5 / 5 (60 voted)

Reviews: 83% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Eusebia Nader

Birthday: 1994-11-11

Address: Apt. 721 977 Ebert Meadows, Jereville, GA 73618-6603

Phone: +2316203969400

Job: International Farming Consultant

Hobby: Reading, Photography, Shooting, Singing, Magic, Kayaking, Mushroom hunting

Introduction: My name is Eusebia Nader, I am a encouraging, brainy, lively, nice, famous, healthy, clever person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.