By Capt. Rachel Reiter
USAG Stuttgart Veterinary Service
It has come to our attention the number of cases of dogs with diarrhea in the USAG Stuttgart Garrison area increased recently. These dogs live on all installations as well as off post and had varying degrees of severity of diarrhea.
While there are many potential causes of diarrhea, some infectious causes include parasites, bacteria, and viral diseases. There is not a confirmed etiology for the cases within community.
Many of the infectious diseases have fecal oral transmission, and dogs contract them by eating or drinking contaminated water, fecal material, or contaminated surfaces such as soil.
There are unfortunately no vaccines for intestinal parasites, but you can prevent parasites such as hookworms, roundworms, whipworms, and tapeworms with monthly parasite prevention products available from your veterinarian. There is unfortunately no prevention product for Giardia, an intestinal protozoal parasite.
Please be sure to pick up your dog’s poop immediately after they defecate. While fecal material can contain infective material such as intestinal worm eggs, many of these eggs need time to mature in the environment before they become infectious to other dogs. By immediately picking up the fecal material, the eggs don’t have a chance to develop and become infective in the environment.
Be sure to practice personal hand hygiene after handling fecal material. While the risk is low, dogs can spread some diseases to people, and hand hygiene is important to protect yourself against the spread of disease.
If your dog has diarrhea, please try to keep them away from public spaces such as dog parks or public trails as much as possible.
If your dog is having diarrhea, it is best to discuss their clinical signs with your veterinarian. As mentioned previously, there are many potential causes of diarrhea, and your veterinarian can help you determine the best course of action for your pet. You can give our office a call to schedule a sick call appointment at the contact information below. If we don’t have appointment availability, please reference the list of off post veterinarians.
The Stuttgart Veterinary Treatment Facility
Panzer Kaserne Bldg. 2996A
Commercial: +49 (0)6371-9464-1888
Hours: M, T, W, F 0830-1200, 1300-1600
Closed: Daily from 1200-1300 and every Thursdays