Tularemia was confirmed in a cat from Dakota County (Apple Valley area) on October 19, 2015. Tularemia is a zoonotic disease (can affect a wide range of animals and humans) that is caused by a bacteria called Francisella tularensis. Tularemia can be transmitted by horseflies, ticks and through contact with infected animals (though it is not transmitted person- to- person). Dogs are relatively resistant to the infection, however, cases have been reported. Cats that are outdoor or outdoor/indoor cats are at higher risk and can get infected with tularemia after hunting an infected rodent or rabbit, however, tularemia has been reported in indoor cats that have no obvious exposure. Clinical signs in animals are usually high fever, lethargy, lymphadenopathy and ulcerations of the tongue and palate. This cat is only the seventh cat to be reported in Minnesota since 2008 but the third case of tularemia in Minnesota this year. Humans can also acquire tularemia, though it is not transmitted person-to-person. The incubation period for tularemia in humans is generally 2-5 days (range, 2-14 days). Acute symptoms include sudden onset of fever, chills, joint and muscle pain, headache and nausea. Please consult your healthcare provider and notify MDH if you have symptoms consistent with tularemia and have recently cared for a suspect tularemia patient.
Algae is common in our lakes and rivers, but at high levels a type called Blue-Green Algae can form and make people and our pets sick. If you see algae in the water and it looks “pea soupy” and has a smell keep out of the water. Blue- Green Algae can cause a fever, vomiting, irritation to skin, eyes, and nasal passages. If you or your pet have come in contact with Blue- Green Algae contact your doctor or veterinarian. For more information on Blue- Green Algae click here.
Dogs vomit occasionally for a variety of relatively benign reasons – to expel something unwanted from their stomach, as a result of gastric irritation or in response to colonic stimulus, for example. Prolonged, unrelenting vomiting or regurgitation, however, can be the sign of a serious condition, anything from head trauma or toxin exposure to pancreatic cancer or gastrointestinal obstruction.