Monday, June 17, 2024

‘Last resort’ Chloramphenicol antibiotic saves dog’s life from mystery diseases

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A show dog from Southern California was saved by a powerful antibiotic after he contracted a rare and deadly respiratory disease that has been spreading among dogs in the US.Ike, a 5-year-old Golden Retriever, fell ill in September while he was traveling with his family to participate in dog shows. He was taken to a vet hospital where he was isolated from other animals.

He tested positive for a mysterious condition called canine infectious respiratory disease complex, which has no specific treatment or medication.

His family was desperate to find a cure for him, until they received a tip from a stranger online who suggested chloramphenicol, an antibiotic used for severe bacterial infections.

They gave Ike the drug, and within hours, he showed signs of improvement. He was able to breathe easier and regain his energy. After a few days, he was discharged from the hospital and reunited with his family.

It’s a very, very strong last-resort antibiotic, but it’s what saved him,” Becky Oliver, Ike’s owner, told ABC7.

Otherwise he would not be here.”

The disease that Ike had is not new, but it has been increasing in frequency and severity in recent months. It has been reported in several states, including Oregon, Indiana, Illinois, Washington, Idaho, Nevada, and the Northeast. Some dogs have died from it.

The Los Angeles County Public Health Department said it received 10 cases of the disease in less than a week.

However, some vets and animal shelters have not seen any rise in the disease among their patients or rescues.

With winter upon us dogs, just like people, are prone to an increase in respiratory illnesses, especially if they spend time indoors with other pets,” Mark Verdino, the chief of veterinary staff at North Shore Animal League America in Long Island, told The New York Post.

He advised dog owners to keep their pets vaccinated and to take them to the vet quickly if they develop respiratory symptoms. He also warned them to avoid places where dogs congregate, such as kennels, groomers, daycare, and dog parks.

The disease causes symptoms similar to a common upper respiratory infection, such as sneezing, runny nose, coughing, and lethargy. However, it does not respond to standard treatments and it does not show up on tests for common diseases.

Vets are still researching the disease and trying to find out what causes it and how to treat it. Some have suggested that another antibiotic, doxycycline, may also work against it.‘Last resort’ Chloramphenicol antibiotic saves dog's life from mystery diseases

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