Pet Education

Browse our veterinary-reviewed Dog and Cat Illness Guide to learn more about pet health. Always talk to your veterinarian if you have a concern about your pet's symptoms or health.
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Canine Blastomycosis

Blastomycosis is a serious fungal disease that infects dogs and humans through the respiratory tract.

CAUSES:

Your dog can contract this disease by inhaling the fungus found in soil near water.

These fungal sporeswill:

Left untreated, blastomycosis can be fatal.

An infected animal can not pass the disease to a healthy animal or to a human.

SIGNS:

At the beginning stages, you may notice any of the following:

As the disease progresses, a wide variety ofsigns can occur, depending on the organs affected, including:

If you notice any of the above signs, you must go to the veterinarian immediately, as blastomycosis can be fatal is not diagnosed and treated right away.

DIAGNOSIS:

Your veterinarian will suspect blastomycosis if you live near water. Some tests may include:

TREATMENT:

Affected dogs need a few months of antifungal medication, orally and through IV. This may cause liver and kidney damage, so your veterinarian will have to closely monitor yourdog and regularly do blood work.

Severely affected eyes may not respond well to the medication and may need to be removed.

PREVENTION:

There is currently no vaccine available against blastomycosis. However there are some preventative measures that you can practice:

PROGNOSIS:

Blastomycosis is usually fatal if not diagnosed and treated right away. Treatment is long, complicated, and expensive, and many dogs do not respond to it.

If your dog's brain or eye is affected, prognosis is worse.

Dogs with poor liver or kidney function may not be able to tolerate the medication.

Relapses can occur.

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