Bacterial infection in cats and dogs
Cats and dogs are susceptible to various bacterial infections caused by a range of bacteria. These include:
- Skin infections, such as deep and superficial pyodermas, which are usually caused by Staphylococcus bacteria. Symptoms include itching and irritation, pustules (Inflamed swellings on the skin filled with pus), sores and patches of hair loss.
- Urinary tract infections; such as cystitis. Symptoms include blood in the urine, abnormal or frequent urination in inappropriate places, blockage of the urethra (tube leading from the bladder) usually caused by Staphylococcus and Proteus bacteria.
- Pneumonia is a lower respiratory tract infection usually due to the bacteria Bordetella bronchiseptica and Streptococcus zooepidemicus as well as others; also fungal or viral infection. The infection causes inflammation of the lung tissue, with symptoms including difficulty breathing, fluid on the lungs, cough, fever and loss of appetite.
- Upper respiratory tract infections include infections of the nose throat and sinuses. Kennel cough is a form of bronchitis that is common infection in dogs and is caused by the bacteria Bordetella bronchiseptica. Infection with other bacteria such as Streptococcus, cause symptoms including congestion, cough and inflammation.
- Enteritis is inflammation of the small intestine and can be caused by bacterial infection with a range of different bacteria, including Salmonella, Shigella, Staphylococcus and Escherichia coli. Symptoms include, vomiting, diarrhoea, dehydration and fever.
Amoxycillin is a broad-spectrum penicillin-like antibiotic that belong to the beta lactam group of antibiotics. It kills bacteria by blocking formation of the bacterial call wall. However, it contains a structure called the beta lactam ring, which is readily attacked by the bacterial enzyme beta-lactamase and can result in resistant bacteria, such as some staphylococci. Amoxycillin is often used in combination with clavulanic acid, an antibiotic structurally related to the penicillins that is able to inactivate a wide range of beta-lactamase enzymes, which helps prevent resistance and also broadens the range of use for amoxicillin. A combination of these two antibiotics is available in drops and tablet form for treating bacterial infections in cats and dogs.
Inflammatory skin infections and topical treatment
Animals including are dogs, cats, horses and cattle are susceptible to moist dermatitis, an inflammatory skin condition caused initially by a skin irritation, which can be an insect bite, skin allergy or laceration. This causes the animal to scratch so that the skin becomes red and inflamed turning into a moist open wound due to constant scratching and biting of the skin. An effective treatment for moist dermatitis is a topical cream containing three separate ingredients:
- Neomycin, a broad-spectrum antibiotic commonly used in topical medications and used to kill a wide range of bacteria that cause skin infections, by inhibiting bacterial protein synthesis.
- Hydrocortisone, a corticosteroid anti-inflammatory that inhibits the production of inflammatory chemicals.
- Lignocaine a local anaesthetic that helps numb the pain and irritation of the skin lesion so that it can heal.