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Veterinarians warn about leptospirosis

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Wichita veterinarians are seeing an increase in cases of leptospirosis, a bacterial disease that can be transmitted to both pets and people. Leptospirosis can be spread through direct contact with urine from infected animals, and can cause kidney and liver failure in dogs. Dr. Erin Schmidt at Chisholm Trail Animal Hospital in Park City, KS., says the disease is preventable with a leptospirosis vaccine that costs about $35 and must be updated annually. “Not only is it very expensive and very difficult to treat our pets. They usually need very extensive hospitalization with some IV fluids, extensive antibiotics. But it can also be transmitted to people and cause the same symptoms in people,” cautioned Dr. Schmidt, adding “Leptospirosis has been one we’ve said is more of an at-risk disease. Well now, I think it’s becoming more of a core disease around here because we’re seeing it not only in the hunting dogs, which is what we always thought we would see it in.” Dr. Schmidt said the best way to prevent the disease is to get your pets vaccinated.

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