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How do dogs get Leptospirosis? 7 Causes and How to prevent?

Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that can be fatal in dogs. It is caused by the bacterium Leptospira interrogans, which is found in water and soil. How do dogs get Leptospirosis?

In the dog world, many diseases can affect the health of dogs. Leptospirosis is a disease that can affect dogs. Dogs are susceptible to this disease, which can be fatal for them.

The purpose of this article is to introduce you to the disease and its symptoms in dogs. It will also discuss how Leptospirosis affects dogs, what causes Leptospirosis in dogs, what tests should be done when your dog has Leptospirosis when you need to take your dog to a vet for Leptospirosis and more.

Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease which can transfer from animals to humans and from dogs to dogs.

In the article, we briefly discuss the Leptospirosis in dogs.

This article is a comprehensive guide about dogs Leptospirosis. You can use the table of content for the quick and smooth navigation.

How do dogs get Leptospirosis?

Zoonotic disease leptospirosis in dogs is referred to, the disease caused by leptospira bacteria. Most dogs infected with the bacteria include exposure to, or drinking lacks, stream or river water. A healthy dog can also be infected from a dog suffering from Leptospirosis.

Dogs can also be infected if their mucous membrane or any wound comes into contact with the spot of the bacteria such as soil, water, food, infected urine etc.

Causes of Leptospirosis in dogs:

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  • Exposure to or drinking river, stream or lacks water infected with Leptospira.
  • In rare cases, the disease can be passed from the mother dog to the puppies.
  • A healthy dog can also be infected from a dog suffering from Leptospirosis.
  • The diseases can also be spread if the pet mucous membrane or any cut, scrape or wound come into contact with the bacteria such as soil, water, food, infected urine etc.
  • A pup can also be infected through a bite from an infected animal.
  • Spread through eating infected tissues or carcasses.
  • Rarely spread through breeding.

Symptoms of Leptospirosis in dogs

The signs and symptoms of Leptospirosis in dogs may vary from breed to breed and dog to dog.

In some dogs, the bacteria develop a severe condition; some can develop a mild and transient illness while some dogs do not show any signs of illness.

Symptoms of dogs Leptospirosis are:

Diagnosing of Leptospirosis in dogs:

The primary diagnosis of the Leptospirosis is signs and symptoms of the dog.

Veterinarians may recommend blood and urine tests.

Serology is the most frequently used diagnostic test for dogs

X-rays and ultrasound examination is Diagnosing option.

Dogs that are most at risk for getting Leptospirosis:

  1. Dogs having other health issues and a weak immune system
  2. Hunting and sporting dogs
  3. Dogs Live near farms, wooded areas and farms.
  4. Dogs live near standing water areas.
  5. Dogs that spent time in a kennel

Treatment of Leptospirosis in dogs:

Proper and regular Vaccination of the illness can protect your puppy for at least 12 months.

Early use of Antibiotic and hepatic support medications, supportive care prescribed by your veterinarian can protect your dog from the severe condition.

Antiemetics and GI protectants are helpful in disease treatment.

How to prevent a dog from Leptospirosis?

Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease which can transfer from animals to humans. So proper prevention is most important for both dog and dogs owner.

Avoid your self and your puppy form the contact of the infected dog’s urine.

To Clean, the sheet, dirt and urine of the dog make sure to wear gloves and avoid skin contact.

Avoid your dog to contact with the infected animal.

Don’t let your dog drink water from standing and dirty water.

Make sure to wash your hands after handling your pet.

Stages of Leptospirosis in dogs:

According to the condition of the diseases leptospirosis has three stages:

  1. Early
  2. Mild
  3. Severe

The early-stage began just after the infection from the Leptospira. Leptospirosis start spreads throughout a dog’s entire body.

The mild stage starts from the beginning of sign and symptoms. The dog Will develop a fever and a bacterial infection of the blood. The health condition of the puppy will depend on the dog’s immune system and its ability to eradicate the disease.

The severe stage is the final stage of the leptospirosis which can lead dogs to kidney and liver failure and even death. Younger animals are at the highest risk they infect because of less developed immune systems.

Can a dog survive Leptospirosis?

The chances of dog surviving Leptospirosis depend on the condition of the disease. Some dogs recover after the initial illness, but some develop more severe symptoms.

If your dogs are nearly diagnosed with the disease, make sure proper care and treatment. Early treatment can prevent your pet from a painful health condition and possible death.

However, if your puppy is suffering from the severe illness of Leptospirosis, then the risk of kidney and liver failure is high, and the chances of survive to reduce.

With proper and regular vaccination and early treatment, you can protect your dog from the severe condition of the illness.

How long does it take a dog to recover from Leptospirosis?

The recovery time of the dog from the leptospirosis depends on the stage and health condition of the diseases.

Early diagnosed with the illness can able to recover dogs quickly.

In the severe cases of leptospirosis, the recovery chances of a pet fall almost to 2%. If the kidney and liver, failure occur then can lead a puppy to death.

Leptospirosis vaccine Chart for dogs:

Young Puppies1st dose: After 12 weeks of birth
2nd dose: 2 to 4 weeks later after ist dose
Adult dogs (Not Vaccinated)Ist dose: Immediate
2nd dose: 2 to 4 weeks apart ist dose
Dogs with weak Immune systemVaccinated Every Year
Intervals of between six and nine month

The leptospirosis vaccine in dogs is a non-core vaccine, so injected the vaccine is not required for all dogs.

However, the leptospirosis vaccine in dogs is suggested by Veterinarians.

For Young puppies, the vaccines are given when they’re 12 weeks in age and second dose again between two and four weeks later. 

Mature dogs and adult dogs who have never been vaccinated against Leptospirosis are Vaccinated by two doses spaced apart between two to four weeks. 

Dogs with other health issues or weak immune system ware high at risks and are advised to get revaccinated every year. They are vaccinated in intervals of between six and nine months.

Leptospirosis vaccine side effects in dogs:

Dogs occasionally experience side effects soon after getting these vaccines. Only a few and rare dogs can develop leptospirosis vaccine side effects.

Possible side effects of leptospirosis vaccine in dogs are:

  • Anaphylaxis
  • Skin rashes and Itching 
  • Vomiting and Diarrhea
  • Sudden Urination 
  • Passing stools 
  • Weakness and Loss of energy 
  • Salivation and Coma 
  • Heightened heart rate and Problems breathing 
  • Seizures and Death 

If you notice any of the above symptoms, contact your vet immediately to avoid any complications.


How common is Leptospirosis in dogs?

Leptospirosis is common in rural areas due to the lake of awareness, proper vaccination and timely treatment is ignored in such areas.

Likewise, the spread daisies are low and uncommon in areas where widespread vaccination of dogs and timely treatment with the preventive measure is routine.

The spread of the Leptospira bacteria may vary from dog to dog. 

How quickly do leptospirosis symptoms appear in dogs?

The signs and symptoms of Leptospirosis in dogs may vary from breed to breed and dog to dog. In some pets, it appears quickly, mild, and some don’t show any symptoms of illness.

In some dogs, the symptoms appear quickly within a few days and can also recover from the illness quickly or later.

In some puppies, the symptoms appear very mild. While some dogs do not show any signs of illness and the disease may go undetected.