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Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs

Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs - Dogs Health care Articles

Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs : Dogs Health care Articles; Question: Dr. Mike, I have two dogs that began having diarrhea a little over a month ago. Our vet took a stool sample that was "loaded" with giardia cysts. He treated them with Metronidazole. After the treatment their stool was re-tested and was normal. Within a week the diarrhea started ... Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs


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Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs

Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs


Question: Dr. Mike,
I have two dogs that began having diarrhea a little over a month ago. Our vet took a stool sample that was "loaded" with giardia cysts. He treated them with Metronidazole. After the treatment their stool was re-tested and was normal. Within a week the diarrhea started again. This time they were given Panacur and, because no one in our apartment community cleans up after their dogs, we decided to try the giardia vaccine. The next day the diarrhea was worse and both dogs were in obvious discomfort. A stool sample revealed not only giardia but also a bacterial infection. They were put on a high dosage of baytril for 7 days. After about 5 days on the baytril their stools were completely normal, but both dogs remained very lethargic. We returned to the vet 6 days after starting the baytril and there was no giardia and no infection. Although the vet was not aware of baytril causing lethargy, he told me to reduce the dosage to half for another day and then discontinue. Within a week one of the dogs began having very loose stools. I took a stool sample to the vet but nothing showed up. Two days later both dogs were having loose stools. We took them back to the vet, again nothing in the stool. We had their giardia vaccine booster done at that time. That was 4 days ago. One dog is now having normal stool, but remains very lethargic. The other still has extremely loose stool and is also lethargic. On two occasions he has had what appeared to be blood in his stool (very black). I'm frustrated and worried. I've tried giving them pumpkin and live culture yogurt, which seemed to help one but nothing is helping the other. Do you have any thoughts? What do you know about the Giardia Vaccine? (My vet said they have had a lot of success, but it's still very new) Any direction you can give me would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks! Jan

Answer: Jan-
I have not used the giardia vaccine from Ft. Dodge, yet. However, veterinarians who have used it seem to think that it works well. It may not help to clear up an existing infection but it may help to prevent future ones. In the vaccine company's studies the vaccine protected against clinical signs of the disease but did not prevent infection. Since the clinical signs are what most people worry about, this is probably OK.
Metronidazole (Flagyl Rx) and fenbendazole (Panacur Rx) are both used frequently to kill giardia, so they are good choices. If these do not seem to work, albendazole (Valbazen Rx) 12.5mg/kg every 12 hours for four doses may also be helpful.
It is possible that there is another problem. With both dogs affected it makes sense to look for an infectious cause, though. Since no other intestinal parasites have been showing up on the fecal exams and since Panacur also kills most intestinal worms, it may also be a good idea to consider the possibility of another problem at this time. Other possible problems include cryptosporidiosis, clostridium, salmonellosis and campylobacter. Protozoan organisms like Balantidium and Entamoeba species are also possible.
There is a good chance for most of these problems to clear up on their own but if intermittent problems continue it may be worth looking for one of these problems.
The lethargy is a little worrisome. It might also be worthwhile to consider a general chemistry panel and white blood cell count if that continues to be a problem, since there could be two problems or a systemic problem causing both signs. This can be seen with kidney problems and liver problems.
I hope that both dogs are doing OK at this time but if not, expanding the search for the cause seems like the most logical approach to me.
Mike Richards, DVM


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Source:vetinfo.com


Diarrhea with Giardia in Dogs

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