Campylobacteriosis in dogs and cats: a review

Campylobacteriosis in dogs and cats: a review
Peer reviewed


Campylobacter species are commonly isolated from faecal samples collected from dogs and cats, with the most prevalent species being C. upsaliensis, C. helveticus, and C. jejuni. Although the majority of dogs and cats are subclinically infected, some will develop mild to moderate enteritis. Immature animals, animals from intensive housing backgrounds, and animals with concurrent disease are especially predisposed to infection and the development of clinical signs. Bacterial culture methods applied in diagnostic laboratories remain biased to C. jejuni and C. coli detection, but molecular methods to diagnose Campylobacter spp. infections in dogs and cats have become widely available and can aid rapid and accurate diagnosis. Multilocus sequence typing has also been developed for subtyping different strains and has been used in epidemiological investigations. In the majority of cases, clinical signs are self-limiting and antimicrobial treatment is not warranted. Campylobacter spp. isolated from dogs and cats have shown resistance to commonly used antimicrobials, so antimicrobial therapy should only be administered where this is justified. Contact with dogs and cats is a recognised risk factor for human campylobacteriosis, thus people living or working in close contact with cats and dogs should be made aware of the zoonotic organisms these animals can shed.

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