Wet weather calls for pet warning

The wet first half of the year on Australia’s east coast has sparked warnings from pet insurers about a bacterial disease that dogs can catch in ponds and puddles.

Leptospirosis can cause serious health complications in humans and dogs, with early warning symptoms such as fever, vomiting, and diarrhea or chills.

Ponds or puddles contaminated with the urine of rodents that carry the disease can seem tempting to dogs for a drink or a splash.

Pet Insurance Australia warns that it has had some claims in the past year for up to $3,000 to treat the disease in pets.

Vaccines are available and pet owners are urged to fix any rodent problems at home or be wary of high construction areas.

“We strongly recommend that dog owners, particularly those in rain-affected areas around Australia, request this vaccination from their local vet,” said Nadia Crighton of the insurer.

“This is definitely going to be a big problem and pet owners need to be vigilant to keep their pets safe”

Pet owners were warned to keep their dogs on a leash, keep them out of ponds, puddles, flooded parks or muddy areas, and clear food debris around the home.

When wet weather triggered the mouse infestation in rural NSW last year, health services saw a spike in human cases of leptospirosis.

The disease can lead to kidney failure and meningitis in humans, and people can get it in the same way as their four-legged friends: in polluted water and mud.

Leave a Comment