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Leptospirosis Outbreak Sydney July 2019

By John Morgan | Dated July 16, 2019

Leptospirosis is a potentially fatal bacterial disease

Leptospirosis is a highly infectious disease carried by rodents and spread either by direct contact or stagnant, contaminated water. Dogs are at risk of contracting this disease in certain areas of Australia – especially in the north and near dairies. Cats are rarely infected. The symtpoms are highly varied but include vomiting, lethargy, fever and bleeding abnormalities.

There have been six confirmed leptospirosis cases in dogs in inner western Sydney (Surry Hills, Glebe, Darlinghurst). These dogs have died within a few days of presentation to their veterinarians. At this time Leptospirosis has not been diagnosed in dogs or cats presenting to Gordon Vet Hospital.

This disease has serious zoonotic potential and pet owners should be very careful if they suspect the disease and contact us immediately.

It is currently being recommended by the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) that:

  • Dogs in the inner city are vaccinated
  • Access to rats and stagnant water should be limited

Based on these recommendations Gordon Vet Hospital advises that all dogs that are likely to travel to the inner city or spend any amount of time there be vaccinated against Leptospirosis. This vaccination is administered subcutaneously and needs to be boosted 1 month after the initial vaccination. Please be advised this is not a standard vaccination and can be discussed with a vet at the time of a visit or during routine vaccination.

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Written by John Morgan

John first started with Gordon Vet Hospital back in 2004 as a weekend Nurse while studying Veterinary Science. When he graduated he worked in Goulburn for a few years before spending 2 years doing locum work through Canada. John returned to Australia in 2013 and came back to Gordon Vet Hospital. John completed his postgraduate studies in Small Animal Practice in 2013 and in 2015 gained Membership to the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in Small Animal Surgery.

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Jeremy Tarbox
22:55 10 Sep 18
We found a stray, agitated dog in front of our house last night. We phoned but got no help from the Council ranger who gave two options: tie him up in front yard overnight or "let him loose, he'll find his own way home" :( So we phoned Gordon Vet: they stayed open a few minutes so we could run him up and he could have a bed and dinner. Thank you Gordon Vet Hospital, hope he gets home soon!!! :)
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