Puppy Strangles in Dogs

Puppy Strangles in Dogs - Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, Recovery, Management, Cost
Puppy Strangles in Dogs - Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis, Treatment, Recovery, Management, Cost

What are Puppy Strangles?

While puppy strangles is almost never found in adult dogs, it is also rare in puppies, for which it is most likely to occur between three weeks and four months of age. It resembles bacterial infection; however, puppy strangles appears to be is an immune-mediated disease. There is an effective treatment for puppy strangles; however, if it continues untreated, it can lead to permanent scarring and even death. Several breeds of dogs develop puppy strangles at a higher rate: Golden Retriever, Gordon Setter, Miniature Dachshund and Siberian Husky.

Puppy strangles is the common term for juvenile cellulitis, a skin disorder that is found in puppies but very rarely in adult dogs. Also known as juvenile pyoderma or puppy head gland disease, it causes facial pustules and affects a puppy’s lymph nodes.
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Puppy Strangles Average Cost

From 231 quotes ranging from $3,500 - $500

Average Cost

$850

Symptoms of Puppy Strangles in Dogs

  • Facial swelling
  • Pustules on face and around the ears; may rupture and form crusts
  • Pustular ear infection
  • Papules (solid, raised masses) on face and around the areas
  • Enlarged lymph nodes behind the jaw; may rupture and drain
  • Fever
  • Skin tender to touch
  • Poor appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Malaise
  • Joint pain
  • (Rarely) pustules over abdomen, reproductive organs and anus.
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Causes of Puppy Strangles in Dogs

While puppy strangles is idiopathic, meaning no cause has been clearly identified, evidence points to the disease as immune-mediated. It appears to be caused by immune dysfunction. Because it occurs more often in certain breeds, it is suspected that puppy strangles or a predisposition to puppy strangles has a genetic correlation.

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Diagnosis of Puppy Strangles in Dogs

Diagnosis of puppy strangles can be difficult, as it resembles staphylococcal pyoderma, a common bacterial skin infection. Since puppy strangles is much more rare, there is a chance of false diagnosis of staph infection. An accurate diagnosis depends upon skin cytology, or microscopic examination of biopsies from the affected area and lesions, as well as cytological analysis of joint fluid in order to detect sterile suppurative arthritis, an advanced symptom that manifests itself as joint pain. The veterinarian will also examine deep skin scrapings in order to look for mites, and examine a fungal culture in order to look for ringworm. It is important to determine if any bacterial or fungal infection has formed as a result of the puppy’s compromised immune system and treat those as symptoms of the underlying disease.

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Treatment of Puppy Strangles in Dogs

Treatment for puppy strangles will primarily be aggressive immunosuppression through corticosteroids, typically with prednisone, accompanied by broad-spectrum antibiotics, such as cephalexin, cefadroxil, or amoxicillin clavulanate, in order to prevent or treat secondary bacterial or fungal infections. In addition to your puppy having a compromised immune system, the exposed tissue from lesions and pustules puts your dog at an increased risk for developing secondary infections. Depending on your puppy’s condition, your veterinarian may also prescribe a topical ointment to soothe pain and itching during recovery.

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Recovery of Puppy Strangles in Dogs

Along with the veterinarian, monitor the progress of your dog’s recovery. Treating a young puppy with an immunosuppressants is not something to be taken lightly, as puppies already have an immature immune system. For this reason, it’s important that the dose of corticosteroids be tapered off during recovery.

If the veterinarian prescribes an ointment for pain, apply it strictly according to the instructions. The most important thing during treatment will be for you to keep the affected areas dry and clean with a solution of astringent and diluted hydrogen peroxide several times a day in order to encourage proper healing. Known as Burow’s solution, you can purchase under the named Domeboro, Star-Octic and Borofair through your veterinarian’s office or at a drugstore.

Puppy strangles is not likely to recur. Unfortunately, permanent scarring is possible, depending upon how quickly treatment is sought after symptoms develop.

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Cost of Puppy Strangles in Dogs

If the puppy has gone untreated too long, the prognosis can be very poor. Prednisone ($40 per 100ct.) is one of the medications your veterinarian may choose and is commonly used to treat inflammatory diseases. They typically will combine prednisone with an antibiotic (Cephalexin, Cefadroxil, or Amoxicillin Clavulanate). Cephalexin 500mg ($30 per 100ct.) is used to treat infections that are caused by bacteria. The combined cost of prednisone and cephalexin is around $70 on average. Cefadroxil ($30 for 50ml. or $60 for 100ml.) is usually in liquid form and is also an antibiotic that is used to treat bacterial infections. The combined cost of prednisone and cefadroxil ranges between $70 and $100. Finally, amoxicillin clavulanate 500mg ($20 per 100ct.) is an antibiotic also used to treat bacterial infections. The combined cost of prednisone and amoxicillin clavulanate is around $60 on average. Combining prednisone and an antibiotic will give your puppy the best chance at a good prognosis.

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Puppy Strangles Average Cost

From 231 quotes ranging from $3,500 - $500

Average Cost

$850

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Puppy Strangles Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

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Bee

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Golden Husky

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2 Months

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0 found helpful

Has Symptoms

Tired

Hi , My 2 Months old puppy swallow baby gloves. She just swallow it , the gloves is a very thin kind of gloves its for new born babies. So far she did not vomit or any sign of diarrhea . She is active and playful as usual but I am really concern about it . Is that anything we can do to make sure she is really okay , plus she pooped as usual just now but we did not see the gloves in there . So far she did not show any symptoms but the gloves still inside her stomach this concern me so much. She is Golden Husky ( Golden retriever mix with Wooly Husky)

Dec. 19, 2017

Bee's Owner


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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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0 Recommendations

Thank you for contacting us today about Bee. There is a risk of a foreign body obstruction, as well as intestinal upset, from the gloves There is a chance that they might pass, but it is sort of unknown at this point. If it has been less than 2 hours, she should be seen at a veterinarian to induce vomiting. If it has been longer, she should be monitored very closely for vomiting, diarrhea, decreased appetite, and lethargy and belly pain. If she shows any of those signs, she needs to see her vet immediately.

Dec. 19, 2017

Can a female dog have a litter of puppys is she had puppy strangle when she was a baby

Jan. 11, 2018

Billie M.


How if she does not show any of these signs . Until now she is active and she seems as usual.

Dec. 20, 2017

Bee's Owner

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Sadie

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Treeing Walker Coonhound

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10 Months

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0 found helpful

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Has Symptoms

Tender Head
Pustules On Eyes, Lower Lips, Anus
Lathargy

Sadie was diagnosed and received treatment within 2 days of developing observable symptoms. The pustules, tenderness, lymph node swelling, and lethargy came on quick. She’s 58 pounds and has been taking one dose of each prescription every 12 hours for one week. Her symptoms are all gone and she doesn’t appear to have any scarring. How should we proceed with the prescriptions? Is it best to continue the antibiotic and steroid at the full dose for another two weeks before tapering off the steroid over another two weeks? Any advice is appreciated.

Nov. 16, 2017

Sadie's Owner

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0 Recommendations

If the symptoms have resolved you should start tapering the dose of prednisone or prednisolone in accordance with the instructions from your Veterinarian; usually the dose is halved for a week or two before going to every other day, but follow the instructions from your Veterinarian. If there is another flare up of symptoms, return to the original dosage and consult with your Veterinarian. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.cliniciansbrief.com/sites/default/files/attachments/Puppy%20Strangles.pdf

Nov. 16, 2017

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Puppy Strangles Average Cost

From 231 quotes ranging from $3,500 - $500

Average Cost

$850

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