Mycoplasma in Dogs

Mycoplasma refers to a certain type of bacteria which can cause infections in both animals and humans. Although it can be found in some dogs that are healthy and display no symptoms of disease, it may also lead to infections, some of which can be serious. Fortunately, mycoplasma can be treated promptly with appropriate antibiotic medicines. However, if you leave an infection caused by mycoplasma without treatment, it may spread and cause a variety of other damages to your dog's body as well. Read on for a brief overview of mycoplasma in dogs.

Symptoms of Mycoplasma Infection

Because mycoplasma can potentially affect a wide range of your pet's bodily systems, it can be difficult oftentimes to pinpoint his symptoms to one particular condition. Therefore, it's important that you be aware of the full scope of potential symptoms for mycoplasma infection. The following are some of the most commonly seen symptoms associated with mycoplasma in dogs:

  • Respiratory issues (coughing, sneezing, discharge from the nose)
  • Difficulty in urination and blood in the urine
  • Colitis and other gastric distress
  • Abortion or infertility
  • Infection of the eyes
  • Weakness and lethargy
  • Loss of appetite and weight
  • Skin lesions and abscesses

If you notice these or any other suspicious symptoms in your dog's body or behavior, it's important to take your pet in to the vet immediately. Because of the potentially very serious nature of this condition, your vet will need to know all of the symptoms that you've seen, as well as how long they have been present for. If necessary, bring a log of those symptoms with you so that you can provide the most accurate information.

Diagnosing and Treating Mycoplasma in Dogs

There are a number of tests and other ways that your vet will be able to test for the presence of mycoplasma bacteria in your dog's system. The most common of these is a complete blood panel and sampling. He will also likely take abdominal and chest x-rays, as well as a urine sample for testing. If your dog has open sores, he'll likely also administer a culture test.

The treatment for mycoplasma in your dog depends upon the extent to which the bacteria has permeated his body. In milder cases, outpatient care with antibiotics may be sufficient to rid your pet of the condition. If your pet is in more serious trouble, however, you might need to have him hospitalized. In other cases, pets will require fluid therapy and rehydration to help keep their bodies at a stable level while the antibiotics are used to flush the mycoplasma bacteria out of their systems.

Because mycoplasma can be passed to humans, it's essential that you use extreme care when treating your pet for this condition. For the best results, follow your veterinarian's recommendations for treating your dog's mycoplasma infection as closely as possible, and be sure to continue all antibiotic treatments through to their completion to eliminate all traces of bacteria from your pet's system.