This is Stookie, he lives with Michael’s brother in Sri Lanka where he works, (the brother not Stookie!). He got ill and quiet and after testing at a local vets it was discovered that he had a disease called Canine Ehrliciosis. Although the local vet gave some information, Stookie’s owners asked Michael for any further details.
Michael hadn’t heard of this disease since leaving university as we don’t have it in the UK (it’s spread by a tick which we don’t have) but it was easy to find details of the condition. The practice subscribes to a computer programme called Vetstream which is like an online textbook. It is regularly updated and as well as having text and pictures, it also contains videos (of operation techniques etc.), sounds (of heart beats etc.) and client handouts. It is an amazing tool which we can access from any computer and seems to cover just about any condition in dogs, cats and rabbits, as well as all the drugs and equipment used.
Above is a photomicrograph of a tick (courtesy of Bayer). Anyway, Stookie has responded well to treatment. We do have ticks in this country, many people may have seen them on dogs and cats as well as hedgehogs, and they do spread diseases, some of which are infectious to humans. Not all flea treatments also kill ticks so if your pet has had ticks, or goes to an area where ticks are common (areas where there are a lot of sheep particularly – but they can be picked up anywhere), it is important you have effective prevention.