Meningitis in Dogs – Symptoms and Treatment
The dog’s organism is complex and susceptible to suffer from multiple diseases, most of them shared with humans, since there are really few diseases that exclusively affect people.
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Dog owners should be aware of those diseases that pose a greater danger to their pet, so that they recognize the symptoms in advance and act appropriately. In this article of YourCatCareguide we will tell you the symptoms and treatment of meningitis in dogs .
What is meningitis?
The term meningitis indicates an inflammation of the meninges , which are those three membranes that cover and protect the brain and spinal cord. This inflammation occurs as a consequence of an infection caused by microorganisms, be they viruses, bacteria or fungi.
It is a disease that can have fateful consequences for our pet and that, moreover, does not distinguish races or ages. However, the truth is that it most often affects the following dogs: Pug, Beagle, Maltese and Bernese Mountain Dog.
Fortunately it has been proven that this area of our pet’s organism is one of the least susceptible to contracting infections if compared to other organs or systems.
Symptoms of meningitis in dogs
It is very important to learn the symptoms of meningitis in order to detect them in time, since if the disease is diagnosed in the first stages the prognosis is good.
A dog affected by meningitis will manifest the following symptoms:
- Extreme sensitivity to touch
- Behavioral changes
- Agitation and confusion
- Loss of coordination
- Stiffness in the muscles of the neck
- Loss of appetite
- Reduced mobility
If you notice in your dog some of these symptoms it is important to go to the vet immediately with him. If meningitis is suspected, a puncture of cerebrospinal fluid or magnetic resonance imaging will be done to check the inflammation of the meninges.
Treatment of meningitis in dogs
The type of treatment will vary depending on the cause of the meningitis , and one or more of the following medicines may be used:
- Corticosteroids : Corticosteroids are strong anti-inflammatories that are used to decrease the immune system response and inflammation caused in the meninges.
- Antibiotics : Should be used when meningitis is bacterial, they can act by eliminating the bacteria or preventing the reproduction of them.
- Antiepileptics : Antiepileptic drugs include numerous substances that interact with the brain to balance neuronal function and to prevent seizures.
The main goal of treatment is to suppress inflammatory activity to prevent irreversible neurological damage in the animal. After the veterinarian has indicated the appropriate treatment, the dog should follow up to evaluate its response to treatment.
Sometimes the dog may need medication in a chronic way to prevent future episodes of meningitis.
If severe meningitis will require hospital treatment to prevent any complications and maintain adequate hydration levels using intravenous fluid therapy in the most severe cases.
As we mentioned at the outset, if the diagnosis is made early and the pharmacological treatment is adequate to treat the underlying cause of meningitis, the prognosis is good.
This article is purely informative, in YourCatCareguide.com.br we do not have the capacity to prescribe veterinary treatments nor to make any type of diagnosis. We suggest you bring your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or malaise.
If you want to read more articles similar to Meningitis in dogs – Symptoms and treatment , we recommend you to enter our section of Mental problems .