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Lyme disease in dogs occurs if your dog is affected by a tick bite.
However, when this disease hit a person initially, it was felt that certain ticks only transmit the disease. Now, greater awareness exists among many people that various ticks can spread the disease.
How Is Lyme Disease Caused?
Lyme disease is also called Lyme borreliosis. It is a bacterial illness where the ticks serve as the carrier for the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi from the host’s (Pets or humans) external environment.
Once the bacteria are released in the bloodstream of the hosts, or dogs in this case, they move freely in the body and cause illness.
Lyme disease bacteria’s entry into the dog’s bloodstream will consequently radiate to other body parts and localize in the joints.
Deer Tick is the primary carrier of Lyme disease. Another critical point to know, the bacterium sits on the gut of a western black-legged tick and a deer tick.
Is Lyme Disease In Dog Contagious?
Lyme disease transmission happens when an infected tick feeds a mammal, a dog, or a person. These ticks look tiny, similar to that of grain sand or a sesame seed.
This disease does not discriminate regarding inflicting dogs (i.e., based on size, age, and breed). Dogs that move in areas where more ticks fly will be more prone to Lyme disease.
Hence ticks, once discovered, must be eradicated. However, infected dogs are not a direct source of transmission to humans.
But in case you and the other pets you own have been with your pet outside in the same environment, while walking amidst the tall grasses or thick marshes, it is essential to get yourself, and your other pets tested.
Lyme Disease In Dogs Symptoms
Lyme disease could cause mild to severe symptoms. The signs could be similar like it is for some other conditions. It is possible that the symptoms would not be seen on several dogs despite suffering infection for many months.
Dogs could also experience significant diseases like end-stage renal failure, cardiovascular, and a severely affected central nervous system.
A dog with clinical illness due to Lyme disease could face symptoms of fever, lameness, enlarged lymph nodes, and lethargy. A dog develops the clinical condition within 2 to 5 months after being inflicted with infection.
Lyme Disease Treatment In Dogs
There are two tests currently available to determine how long your dog is suffering from this disease-inflicted infection. If a positive result comes out from the screening test, you take the dog to a vet.
The veterinarian will give you suitable advice regarding treatment for your dog, if needed or not. Generally, vets advise annual screening tests for detecting this disease to people who live in high-risk areas like Massachusetts.
Based on research, many dogs seem to have entirely recovered after undertaking treatment with antibiotic medicines like Amoxicillin or Doxycycline. The earlier the treatment is given to a dog it can be cured quickly.
In severe cases, dogs can suffer from kidney disease that can turn critical, become incurable, and cost its life. Other high-risk disorders like heart disease and damage to the central nervous system also could occur.
Alternative Targeted Treatment For Dogs
Lyme bacteria enter the body and settle in collagen-rich sites. The bacteria operate by feeding on collagen and causes inflammation.
As the collagen is broken causing a lowered immune response, the organs that defend the dogs against the Lyme bacteria gets deteriorated.
It is clearly understood that to treat Lyme disease, three systemic actions must occur in the affected dog’s system.
- Supplement collage ad prevent collagen damage
- Targeted reduction of the inflammation caused by the bacteria
- Increase the functioning of the immune system.
Some of the herbal remedies that can be used for the targeted treatment of the above-mentioned conditions are:
- Japanese Knotweed root: Scientifically known as Polygonum cuspidatum helps in treating the inflammation caused by the parasite as the MOA of these roots is exactly against the inflammation pathways caused by the Lyme bacteria.
The roots act as synergists and it is a food-grade root, which can be powdered and administered to your dogs.
- Cats Claw: Scientifically known as Uncaria tomentosahelps to increase the immune responses and boos the immunity of the dogs. As a result, the innate system gets ready to fight the infection on its own.
Again, cat claws are of food grade and they are safe to be fed to dogs once a day.
- Glucosamine sulfate: It is a natural supplement that is often given to dogs to strengthen the bone joints and make the dog active for exercise. Some of the powdered forms also include chondroitin, MSM, and collagen. These can cure Lyme disease in dogs.
Teasel, Astragalus, and Ledum are other available alternative herbal products that can be fed to dogs to treat symptoms of Lyme disease in dogs. Most of the time, essential oils can help in the cure.
These essential oils have antibiotic nature and are rich in volatile plant compounds that aid the reduction of the symptoms. Some of the most effective oils in the treatment of Lyme disease in dogs include cinnamon bark oil, clove oil, and oregano oil.
Also in various research, garlic oil has proven to be the best against the encysted bacteria causing Lyme disease in dogs. However, it is highly advised to use essential oils under professional guidance.
The chronic symptoms of Lyme Disease if noted properly can be treated with antibiotics and also using other alternative therapies available.