Leptospirosis Update 25th August 2020:
Sadly yesterday there was another confirmed Leptospirosis case, this time the dog was from Crows Nest. The dog was not vaccinated against Leptospirosis and sadly was euthanized due to anuric renal failure. They were unable to determine the causative serovar in this case – likely due to insufficient time for seroconversion. This is the first reported case of Leptospirosis from Crows Nest.
Last year there were 8 confirmed Leptospirosis cases between May and November and these dogs lived or visited Surry Hills, Darlinghurst, Glebe and Redfern. This month there has been 2 Leptospirosis cases recorded from Newtown and Balmain. While the dog from Newtown was also euthanized the dog from Balmain has been discharged from the hospital and is recovering well. In both these cases Copenhageni was identified as the causative serovar.
Therefore, we recommend vaccination against Leptospirosis in dogs who live or visit the Inner West of Sydney, North Shore plus the Northern Beaches areas or if a dog is in contact with rats.
Leptospirosis Update 14th August 2020:
This week there has been a case of confirmed Leptospirosis in a dog in Newtown. Sadly, this dog was euthanised. The dog had been in contact with rats.
This is the first case of confirmed Leptospirosis this year and the first one reported in Newtown. Please remain vigilant! Sydney Animal Hospitals continue to recommend vaccination of dogs in the Newtown and Erskineville area – which is on the border of the previously recommended zone, a 3 km radius around Surry Hills.
Sydney Animal Hospitals currently continues to strongly recommend vaccination for all Inner City dogs and all dogs that may be exposed to rats or environments inhabited by rats.
Please ensure your dog remains current with its vaccination protocol. Boosters are required annually if your dog has been previously vaccinated.
The University of Sydney continues to investigate Leptospirosis cases to determine which serovars are involved and if there is any specific source of infection which can be identified. Sydney Animal Hospitals is assisting the University and may ask for your permission in collecting samples from your dog prior to vaccinations. Sampling should not be cause for alarm, it is to collate information in healthy animals in order to obtain the back ground exposure in our dog’s communities.
Leptospirosis may be suspected in any dog with:
– Nonspecific clinical signs like lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea
– Azotemia (kidney failure)
– +/- hyperbilirubinaemia (yellow gums and mucus membranes), elevated liver enzymes
– +/- glucosuria (glucose in the urine)
Important information that the vet may ask is:
– Any contact with rats
– Any contact with stagnant water (eg ponds)
– Which area is the patient from?
– Any travel to endemic areas (Newtown, Surry Hills, Darlinghurst, Redfern, Glebe and surrounding suburbs)
In suspicious cases SAH vets will recommend:
– Collection of urine and blood samples
– Ensuring gloves / PPE are worn when handling the animal as Leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease (that is a disease that is transmissible to humans)
– Starting treatment with IV fluids and antibiotics.
– The patient should be isolated from other animals. We currently recommend isolation for 72 hours following the commencement of antibiotics.
– The owner/s should be advised to seek medical advice.
We may ask clients who are from the Inner West of Sydney area to obtain screening samples from their dog before we vaccinate against leptospirosis, on behalf of the University Study into the prevalence of this disease. These blood and urine samples would be collected before the dog’s initial vaccination (only in dogs never vaccinated against leptospirosis before).
more information on Leptospirosis contact your local Sydney Animal Hospitals;
Newtown (02) 9519 4111
69-73 Erskineville Road Erskineville Open Monday to Friday 7am-11pm Saturday & Sunday 7am-6pm
Inner West (02) 9516 1466
1A Northumberland Ave Stanmore Open Monday to Friday 7am-8pm Saturday & Sunday 8am-6pm
Norwest (02) 8883 0411
Unit 8, 1-3 Celebration Dr Bella Vista Open Monday to Friday 7am-11pm Saturday & Sunday 8am-6pm
Kellyville (02) 8883 0533
106 Windsor Rd Kellyville Open Monday to Friday 7am-9pm Saturday & Sunday 8am-6pm
Newport (02) 9997 4609
1 Palm Rd Newport Open Monday to Sunday 7.30am-7pm
Avalon (02) 9918 0833
710 Barrenjoey Rd Avalon Beach Open Monday to Friday 8am-7pm Saturday 8.30am-4pm closed Sundays
Update on Leptospirosis 05/08/19
Sydney Animal Hospitals recommend vaccination of dogs who live or visit the Inner-City Sydney area.
Sadly a dog from the Northern Beaches is reported to have passed away from Leptospirosis after visiting an off-leash dog park in the Inner West of Sydney. Sydney Animal Hospitals is recommending vaccination for all at risk dogs, this includes any dogs that may travel to the inner city (or currently live in that area) either now or in the future. Leptospirosis is a fatal disease of dogs that can also be transmitted to humans, as such, our veterinary team are recommending vaccination to ensure your pet and your family are not at risk.
Update on Leptospirosis 10/7/19
Dogs in the Inner City Sydney are considered at risk of contracting leptospirosis. There have been 7 confirmed cases, 5 of which unfortunately succumbed to the disease. We have advice from Professor Jacqui Norris Head of Microbiology and infectious diseases, that this is considered an outbreak. It is unknown as to why the disease has emerged in Inner City Sydney, but possibly there is increased rat activity and population movement associated with construction (e.g. light rail).
Please contact your local Sydney Animal Hospitals for details on getting your dog vaccinated.
Sydney Animal Hospitals has been monitoring the outbreak of Leptospirosis, which is a disease transmitted mainly by rodent (particularly rats and mice) urine contamination. Our understanding is that there have been 3 (possibly 5) cases this year, from the inner city area. The disease can be fatal.
If a dog is exposed (this disease can infect cats, but the incidence is much less likely) there is a seven day incubation period between infection and clinical signs. Signs of infection include fever, vomiting, loss of appetite, red urine and ultimately meningitis and kidney failure.
Leptospirosis can be transmitted to humans – it is a zoonotic disease.
The following is an extract from an advice memo by Dr Jody Braddock, specialist Veterinarian at SVES:
Reservoirs: Rodents (rats and mice) are a reservoir species for Leptospira and the most likely source of Leptospira sp.
infection in urban areas is exposure to infected rodent urine or exposure to stagnant water contaminated with infected rodent urine. The recent weather patterns in Sydney would be favourable for this organism to be more easily spread due to rain and pooling water, but it is considered likely that the organism is endemic in the rodent population.
Furthermore, the organism can survive for up to 2 months in stagnant water if conditions are favourable. Leptospires do not survive in dry conditions. Transmission is by direct contact of the organism (in urine or contaminated water) with mucus membranes or macerated skin, or breaks in skin or by swallowing infected water.
Leptospira vaccination is considered the best protection available for “at risk” populations however up to three vaccinations are required for maximum immunity – follow manufacturer’s recommendation. As for all vaccinations, there is individual variation in the level and duration of immunity, and it is likely shorter than that of the core vaccines.
Human transmission / zoonotic / occupational exposure:
Staff are at risk when exposed to the infected urine of affected patients. Staff should wear PPE when handling affected or suspected infected patients and masks worn when hosing / cleaning their cages and washing bedding.
While this is typically a disease of more tropical cities and towns, the disease has emerged in inner city Sydney so it is important that the Sydney Animal Hospitals clients in these areas are informed and aware of Leptospirosis.
Prevention measures include keeping dogs on leads after rain to prevent drinking from puddles. If you have rodents around your property use pet safe control methods, although rats and mice in laneways and back alleys are implicated in Leptospirosis transmission. Dogs in high risk areas or with high risk behaviours (like scavenging or puddle drinking) should also be vaccinated.
Sydney Animal Hospitals staff would be happy to answer any questions about the disease and vaccinating your pet.
Contact your local Sydney Animal Hospitals on:
To read more click here Leptospirosis Alert