Lyme Disease in Dogs and the Life Expectancy of Dogs With Lyme Disease
Dogs with Lyme disease can have a shorter life span than other animals. However, recovery from the infection depends on the time it takes to cure the disease. Treatment can be a lifesaver, allowing your dog to return to his or her former self as soon as possible.
Does Lyme disease cause permanent damage to dogs?
If you suspect that your dog has contracted Lyme disease, you need to visit a veterinarian to get a proper diagnosis. Symptoms of the disease include fever, swollen joints, and lameness. Your veterinarian may recommend certain blood tests to rule out other causes of fever and lameness. One of these tests is an antibody test. The test is useful in diagnosing the disease because it detects antibodies that are produced when your dog comes into contact with the infection. However, this test is not foolproof as it can be falsely negative if your dog has not yet developed enough antibodies to make the disease evident.
Antibiotic treatment is usually recommended for dogs with symptoms of Lyme disease. The most common antibiotic used is Doxycycline, but other antibiotics may be prescribed. Typically, treatment takes four weeks, but sometimes a longer period is required. Anti-inflammatory medications may also be prescribed to relieve joint pain.
Does Lyme disease affect life expectancy?
Antibiotics are the standard treatment for dogs with Lyme disease. Several different antibiotics may be used, including doxycycline, amoxicillin, and minocycline. Depending on the severity of your dog’s symptoms, your veterinarian may prescribe a different antibiotic. Antibiotics are given over a course of four to six weeks. The length of the course may depend on the severity of the disease, but the main goal is to eradicate the infection and kill the spirochetes. In some cases, veterinarians may prescribe longer courses of antibiotics or higher doses of doxycycline.
A blood test can confirm that your dog has Lyme disease by detecting antibodies. You should seek medical treatment as soon as possible if you notice any of these symptoms. Fortunately, your vet is equipped to perform these tests in most cases. In a high-risk area, a Lyme vaccine is a good idea, but it isn’t a guarantee. Besides treating your dog’s illness, you should also keep your pet safe by using monthly preventatives and inspecting your dog’s body regularly. If your dog is exposed to ticks, be sure to check it for them manually. Ticks are a major threat to your dog’s health, as they carry several infectious diseases, including Ehrlichiosis and Anaplasmosis. Other tick-borne diseases include Bartonellosis, Rocky Mountain Spot
Can Lyme disease flare up again in dogs?
While many dogs with Lyme disease respond to antibiotic treatment, some are at risk of recurring infections. The best way to prevent this is to get your dog checked regularly by a veterinarian. Blood work will show if Lyme disease has returned and help you determine if additional therapy is needed. Your vet can also recommend other preventative measures, such as tick screenings.
Another symptom that can indicate Lyme disease in dogs is loss of appetite. If your dog does not seem to have any interest in eating for a few days or even weeks, you should take them to a vet. Lack of appetite is a common sign of many illnesses in dogs, so your vet can help you determine the cause and offer you medication. If your dog is still losing appetite, consider giving him a prescription diet with extra nutrients.
How fatal is Lyme disease in dogs?
The most serious complication of Lyme disease in dogs is kidney failure, which can lead to the dog’s death if left untreated. Other complications may include heart failure and damage to the nervous system. If untreated, Lyme disease can cause other problems as well, such as an increase in thirst, vomiting, and diarrhea. Treatment depends on the severity of the infection, but in many cases, antibiotics are enough to cure the infection. However, if the infection is resistant to antibiotics, further treatment may be required.
The first treatment for Lyme disease in dogs involves antibiotic therapy. Typically, your veterinarian will give your dog a course of antibiotics for at least 30 days. The antibiotics used to treat Lyme disease include amoxicillin, doxycycline, and azithromycin. However, longer courses of antibiotics may be required if the disease has affected your dog’s internal organs. Your veterinarian may also recommend other forms of therapy if your dog has a particularly debilitating form of the disease.