The Savvy VetTech

Leptospirosis Review

by Lori Hehn - October 23, 2014 at 11:00 AM

October is Leptospirosis awareness month. Take a moment to review some facts about this zoonotic disease.

What is Leptospirosis? It is a disease caused by a spiral shaped Leptospira bacteria that can infect wildlife, domestic pets, and humans. Many wildlife are carriers of the bacteria and do not have any clinical symptoms of the disease.

How is it transmitted? The bacteria are passed in the urine to water sources where they can live and reproduce. They can survive for a long time in water (especially stagnant water, ponds, or lakes) and wet soil. Animals become infected by drinking or swimming in water that is contaminated by the bacteria. It can enter the bloodstream through the mucous membranes or through a wound or cut.

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