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The Facts on Trichomoniasis

Posted by: Dr. Lee Jones, MS, DVM

Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted disease in cattle that can cause significant economic losses in herds. The disease is caused by a single celled parasite, Tritrichomonas foetus. Though the true prevalence of trichomoniasis in cattle is not known, several states have recently enacted stringent rules to control the importation or transmission of the disease.

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Macrorhabdus Ornithogaster Infection in Pet and Farmed Birds

Posted by: Angela E. Ellis, DVM, PhD

Macrorhabdus ornithogaster is a well-known cause of proventriculitis in birds. Although this organism was originally termed Megabacterium due to its large, rod-like appearance, the organism has since been classified as an anamorphic ascomycetous yeast. Clinical signs may be variable and include sudden death or chronic wasting. Diarrhea or enteritis has also been reported in birds colonized by Macrorhabdus; however, these birds can have concurrent enteric parasites, bacterial infections, or other diseases that could cause diarrhea.

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Sparganosis: A Zoonotic Cestodiasis

Posted by: Moges Woldemeskel, DVM, PhD, DACVP (TVDIL)

Sparganosis is an infection of tissues by second stage larvae (spargana or plerocercoid) of pseudophyllidean tapeworms. Sparganosis due to pseudophyllidean cestodes such as Sparganum spp. (e.g. Sparganum proliferum) and Spirometra spp. (e.g. Spirometra mansonoides, Spirometra erinaceieuropaei) can occur in body cavities or in tissues of intermediate and paratenic hosts. Sparganum proliferum is phylogenetically identified as a new species in the order pseudophyllidea. The life cycle and the definitive host of Sparganum proliferum is unknown but believed to be similar to that of Spirometra spp. The definite hosts of Spirometra spp. are carnivores, and the eggs are shed in feces. The eggs embryonate in the environment, hatch in water and release coracidia. Coracidia are ingested by intermediate hosts, copepod crustaceans (Cyclops spp.), and develop into procercoids. Second intermediate hosts including fish, reptiles, and amphibians ingest infected copepods and acquire procercoid larvae. Procercoids develop into plerocercoids in the second intermediate hosts. Predators of the second intermediate hosts are infected by the plerocercoids. Plerocercoidosis/sparganosis develops after ingesting procercoids or plerocercoids with contaminated water or infected intermediate hosts. Humans and other mammals including apes, pigs, dogs, and cats can serve as paratenic or second intermediate hosts and develop sparganosis.

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Mushroom Intoxication

Posted by: Sue E. Turnquist, DVM, MS, PhD, DACVP (TVDIL)

Two cases of mushroom toxicosis recently have been diagnosed at the TVDIL. The first case involved a 2 year-old mixed breed dog that died following a brief course of vomiting and bloody diarrhea. The second case involved a 12 week-old Labrador Retriever puppy with a history of vomiting with death occurring within 24 hours of the onset of clinical signs. The submitting veterinarian noted that the owners had seen the puppy eat a mushroom. Both dogs had submassive to massive hepatic necrosis which is very typical for mushroom poisoning.

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Enterotoxemia in Sheep and Goats

Posted by: Murray E. Hines II, DVM, PhD, DACVP

Enterotoxemia, also known as overeating or pulpy kidney disease, is a condition caused by Clostridium perfringens type D. These bacteria are normally found in the soil and as part of the normal microflora in the gastrointestinal tract of healthy sheep and goats. Under specific conditions, these bacteria can rapidly reproduce in the animal’s intestine, producing large quantities of toxins. The epsilon toxin produced by C. perfringens Type D is the most significant toxin in producing the disease. Young animals are most susceptible. Sudden and high mortality rates may occasionally occur in lambs and kids. Although adult animals are also susceptible to enterotoxemia, they develop immunity due to frequent exposure to low doses of these toxins.

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