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What are bacterial infections in dogs?
Bacterial infections can occur anywhere on a dog's body. When your dog gets cuts or scratches, these bacteria can enter his body through these holes. They can also enter through the mucous membranes of the eyes, mouth and nose. Once the bacteria enter the dog's body, they can enter his bloodstream and cause an infection.
What causes bacterial infections in dogs?
There are many reasons why your dog can get a bacterial infection. Here are some of the most common reasons your dog may have suddenly developed an infection.
- Weakened immune system: If your dog is sick or has another illness, he may be more likely to get a bacterial infection than a healthy dog. A dog's immune system should be able to fight off infections, but with a weakened immune system, your dog cannot fight off the bacteria it comes in contact with and may become infected.
- Poor nutrition: What your dog eats affects his health. If your dog eats the wrong diet, he won't have the nutrients and energy he needs to fight infection. This can cause your dog to have more bacterial infections than if he were fed a high-quality diet.
- Aging: As your dog ages, he becomes more prone to developing bacterial infections, as he no longer has a healthy immune system or may be infected with another disease.
- Allergies: If your dog is allergic, he is more likely to develop a skin infection. When they itch and scratch, they damage the protective layer of their skin. This can allow bacteria to easily and quickly cause a skin infection.
- Lack of exercise: Exercise helps your dog stay healthy and fit. If you keep your dog at a healthy weight, you can reduce the number of infections he gets. It also prevents them from developing rolls of fat, which can also easily become infected.
- Stress: If your dog is stressed, his immune system cannot function properly. You may notice that your dog is a little sick and can easily develop bacterial infections.
- Other illnesses: If your dog is struggling with other illnesses, he can also develop bacterial infections. This is because your dog's body has to cope with another illness while trying to prevent the bacterial infection from developing.
The different types of bacterial infections in dogs
There are many different types of bacterial infections that your dog can get. Here are some of the most common bacterial infections in dogs.
- Skin infections: Dogs can easily get skin infections. These infections can spread throughout the dog's body. In many cases, they are caused by common bacteria that are contracted on damaged skin. Once the bacteria begin to grow, the infection can quickly spread throughout the dog's body.
- Leptospirosis: Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that your dog can get from contact with the infected urine of another animal, such as a rat.
- Lyme disease: Lyme disease is transmitted to the dog by the bite of an infected tick. Tick-borne diseases can cause your dog to experience joint pain and feel very ill. This can be easily treated with doxycycline.
- Bacterial ear infections: Dogs with ear infections are usually caused by bacteria or yeast. These infections can be very serious. If your dog has an ear infection, it is best to have your veterinarian prescribe an ear medication to help you deal with this infection.
- Bacterial eye infections: Eye infections can also be caused by bacteria. If your dog has red eyes or discharge from his eyes, it could be a sign of infection. Your veterinarian can prescribe eye drops to help eliminate this eye infection.
- Urinary tract infection: A common bacterial infection seen in dogs is urinary tract infection. A urinary tract infection results in more frequent urination and possibly more water.
- Pyometra: Pyometra is an infection of your dog's uterus. It is common in older dogs that have not been spayed. It usually requires emergency surgery to remove the uterus and infection. This can be a life-threatening problem that requires immediate veterinary attention.
How are bacterial infections in dogs treated?
If your dog has a bacterial infection, it is best to see a veterinarian. They can prescribe antibiotics to help get rid of this infection. If your dog has a skin infection or wound, the vet can also send home shampoos or ointments for you to use on your dog as well. Be sure to follow your vet's instructions so that your dog recovers quickly from a bacterial infection.
If the infection is really bad, the veterinarian may take a sample of the dog's skin, urine or discharge from the ears or eyes. He can send these samples to a lab to find out what bacteria are growing and what bacteria will treat these infections.
If your dog has recently been diagnosed with a bacterial infection, or if you think your dog has a bacterial infection, your veterinarian is in the best position to help your dog get better. Your veterinarian can prescribe medications that will help your dog get rid of this infection quickly. In severe cases, your dog may need a culture to make sure he does not have a resistant bacterial infection. With proper treatment and care, your dog can recover quickly from these infections.