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Puppies and Biting by Frank Utchen, DVM

For those of you who have adopted a puppy recently I want to convey what I think is the most important thing you can teach a puppy. Of course, there are countless things puppies can—and should learn—to help them feel comfortable with their place in the “pack” (i.e., your family). I believe dogs do best in a structured environment, and consistent training is part of maintaining that structure for them. 

So what do I think is most important? I think most trainers would agree that teaching a puppy “bite inhibition” is crucial to having a dog who is a pleasure to be around, and not a potential concern or liability when around other people and dogs. 

Wh... Read More

Zoonotic Diseases in Dogs

What is a zoonotic disease?

Zoonotic disease or zoonoses are terms used to describe an infection or disease that can be transmitted from an animal to a human being.

Are there many zoonoses?

Altogether, well over a hundred diseases are capable of being transmitted from animals to humans, although most are rare in North America. All domestic animals including dogs, cats, birds, horses, cows, sheep, goats and rabbits can potentiall... Read More

Leptospirosis in Dogs - Testing

What is Canine Leptospirosis? 

Leptospirosis is an infectious disease caused by a bacterium called Leptospira. Infection often causes serious damage to the kidney and liver, and can be fatal in severe cases. The organism is transmitted in the urine of infected animals and can survive in the environment for long periods of time, especially in warm stagnant water or moist soil. Wild animals, including the skunk, raccoon, opossum, rat, wolf, and deer, are an important source of infection.

How are dogs infected? 

Most dogs are inf... Read More

Leptospirosis in Dogs

What is leptospirosis?

Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease of dogs and other mammals that primarily affects the liver or kidneys. Leptospires are known as "aquatic spirochetes": the organism thrives in water and they have a helical or spiral shape with a characteristic hook on one or both ends.

There are many species and serovars of Leptospira, some of which cause disease in dogs. In the past, the usual serovars that affected dogs were Leptospira canicola and Leptospira icterohemorrhagiaeRead More

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