Giardia Infection


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Presentation on Giardia infection in cats ( feline) and treatment measures. Of particular interest to multiple cat households.

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Giardia Infection

  1. 1. GIARDIA INFECTION<br />The POOP nightmare for every multiple cat and/or dog household<br />1<br />
  2. 2. If there’s any doubt…<br />Loose Stools we don’t want to see!<br />Nice firm turds are what we DO want to see!<br />2<br />
  3. 3. Definitions<br />Diarrhea…Excessive and frequent evacuation of watery feces, usually indicating gastrointestinal distress or disorder.<br />Loose Stool…Refers to watery feces with no solid form.  (Loose stool would be classified as &quot;diarrhea&quot; if the passage of stool was frequent or excessive in volume.)<br />Tenesmus…A painfully urgent but ineffectual attempt to urinate or defecate<br />3<br />
  4. 4. The Poop Patrol by Terri Jorgensen<br />4<br />
  5. 5. COLOR<br />Yellow or Greenish Stool = Rapid transit<br />Black Tarry Stool = Bleeding in upper digestive tract<br />Red Bloody Stool = Bleeding in the lower bowel (colon)<br />Pasty, Light-colored Stool = Lack of Bile (liver disease)<br />Large Gray, Rancid-smelling Stool = Inadequate digestion, Malabsorption Syndrome (often with oil on hair around anus)<br />5<br />
  6. 6. Consistency<br />Soft Bulky Stool = Overfeeding or poor quality food high in fiber<br />Watery Stool = Bowel wall irritation with rapid transit and decreased absorption<br />Foamy Stool = Suggestive of bacterial infection<br />6<br />
  7. 7. ODOR<br />The more watery the stool, the greater the odor!<br />Foodlike smell or sour milk smell = both incomplete digestion and inadequate absorption<br />Putrid smell = infection or blood<br />7<br />
  8. 8. FREQUENCY<br />Several small stools per hour with straining = colitis<br />3-4 large stools per day = malabsorption or inflammatory bowel<br />(Note: any pathogen or parasite that would trigger rapid transit of food through the bowel would also result in malabsorption)<br />8<br />
  9. 9. What Exactly is Giardia?<br />Giardia are protozoans (single celled organisms)<br />This microscopic parasite clings to the surface of the intestine, or floats free in the mucous lining the intestine.<br />The motile feeding stage occurs in the small intestine.<br />The non-motile cyst stage occurs in large intestine.<br />9<br />
  10. 10. LifeCycle and Transmission<br />Giardia is transmitted during the cyst stage when it is excreted in the feces. Cats pick up cysts from the litter, floors, or fur. They usually ingest the cysts while cleaning themselves. <br />10<br />
  11. 11. The Cysts are the Big Enemy!<br />Cysts can live outside of the body for months in favorable (moist & warm) environments.<br />Cysts are very hard to kill.<br />Cysts are very easy to pick up and contaminate water supplies like streams and wells.<br />11<br />
  12. 12. Symptoms<br />Symptomatic cats are “sick”<br />Asymptomatic cats are “carriers”.<br />No symptoms.<br />Can excrete cysts in feces.<br />Stressful conditions such as changes in food, moves, overcrowding, breeding, showing, new cats, etc. can bring on a “break”.<br />Loose stools, diarrhea<br />Frequent stinky stools<br />Weight loss<br />12<br />
  13. 13. Giardia Flagellated attached to intestinal wall<br />This is the stage that creates the sickness, Giardiasis. <br />The Giardia attach to the intestinal wall and interfere with the cat’s ability to absorb nutrients. <br />This creates the weight loss. They usually don’t lose appetite.<br />13<br />
  14. 14. Diagnosis<br />Fecal Loop<br />Inserted into rectum to get FRESH fecal or mucus sample that hopefully contains Giardia (if there is an infection). <br />Stool Samples need to be FRESH and MOIST<br />Cysts are shed in stools sporadically<br />Need several samples over at least three days<br />Cysts & flagellet die in dry & hot conditions.<br />ELISA test better than fecal exam<br />You CAN get false negatives!<br />14<br />
  15. 15. As the Litter Box Turns<br />FLAGELLET<br />Mostly found in LOOSE stool<br />Don’t survive outside of body for long<br />CYST<br />Mostly found in FIRM stools<br />Survive outside of body for months<br />15<br />
  16. 16. TREATMENT<br />The great Big FUN FUNFUN topic, especially for multiple cat/dog households! <br />16<br />
  17. 17. Fenbendazole<br />“Panacur”—anti-parasitic<br />Safeguard (for goats) is a fenbendazole 10% solution, 100 mg/ml.<br />Can be purchased at Coastal Farm Supply or Winco Farm Supply<br />Dosage is 50 mg/kg of body weight or 25 mg/lb of body weight.<br />Dose by mouth once daily for 5 to 10 days…some advise 14 days.<br />17<br />
  18. 18. Metrondizole<br />“Flagyl”– anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anti-parasitic.<br />Helpful to calm the bowel.<br />Often given in conjunction with fenbendazole.<br />About 70% effective in treating Giardia.<br />Can be toxic to the liver and cause vomiting.<br />Dosage is 15 mg/kg body weight <br />(My 5-6 lb cat was given 63 mg once daily)<br />Dose one time a day for 7 to 10 days. <br />18<br />
  19. 19. The Environment<br /><ul><li> Bleach every surface you can several times while treating and at the least when treatment is done.
  20. 20. Bleach litter boxes and scoops every time litter is changed.
  21. 21. Steam clean your house if you can, including hard floors
  22. 22. Steam clean your carpets and upholstery
  23. 23. Machine Wash in hot water </li></ul>19<br />
  24. 24. Cats and Their Litter Boxes<br /><ul><li> Scoop fecal matter out immediately
  25. 25. Sweep up cat litter and waste from floors frequently
  26. 26. Change cat litter more frequently
  27. 27. Use different scoops for each group
  28. 28. BLEACH
  29. 29. Trim hair from “perianal” area
  30. 30. Use baby wipes to wash their butts for them several times a day
  31. 31. Wash their feet if litter is sticking to them
  32. 32. When treatment is done, dump litter, bleach boxes & scoops, and bathe your cats</li></ul>20<br />
  33. 33. Multiple Cat/Pet Households<br /><ul><li> After first treatment, rest for 7 days, then treat & clean again.
  34. 34. Treat entire population
  35. 35. Treat on regular basis, like every 6-12 months
  36. 36. For cleaning, you should put animals in a “clean area”,
  37. 37. disinfect living quarters,
  38. 38. let dry for 3 days
  39. 39. return bathed pets to quarters
  40. 40. Treat ALL new cats during quarantine as if they have Giardia!</li></ul>21<br />
  41. 41. Wash Your Hands EVERY Time You or a Child in Your Home Touches Your Cats or Litter Boxes <br />22<br />
  42. 42. Resources<br /><ul><li>
  43. 43.
  44. 44.</li></ul>23<br />