If you’ve ever experienced strep throat, you'll know the feeling of soreness and pain in the throat when swallowing, along with the other accompanying symptoms of the condition. Bummer. And if you suddenly notice your dog exhibiting the same symptoms, you might be wondering, "Can dogs get strep throat?" Also, do dogs have tonsils?
Like us, dogs also have tonsils, lymph nodes, larynx, and vocal cords. This makes them susceptible to conditions that affect the throat, such as strep throat, a bacterial infection in the throat, and tonsillitis, known to affect humans and animals alike. And while it is more common in humans, dogs can get strep throat too. Most commonly, it is the Streptococcus Group G bacterium that causes dogs to get strep throat and is very contagious.
Let us get to know more about how strep throat affects dogs.
- Where Are Dog Tonsils Located, and What Is Their Function
- Can Dogs Get Strep Throat
- Symptoms of Strep Throat in Dogs
- How to Treat a Dog With Strep Throat
- How Will the Emergency Fund Help With Treatment
- Can Strep Be Transmitted Between You and Your Dog
Where Are Dog Tonsils Located, and What Is Their Function
Dogs have a pair of tonsils (akin to lymph nodes), and they can be found in crypts or tiny pouches at the back of their throat. They may not be easily visible when they're at their normal size, but they bulge from outside the crypts when they are swollen. This inflammation happens when they are fighting an infection.
So, you might ask, "What exactly do tonsils do?" Like lymph nodes, the role of tonsils in a dog's body is to fight infection.
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Can Dogs Get Strep Throat
The simple answer is yes; dogs can get strep throat. However, the way they get it isn't the same as how humans get it. First of all, the bacterium that affects humans is caused by a different strain than the bacterium that causes strep throat in dogs.
On the other hand, there are some common factors when it comes to strep throat in dogs and humans, such as similarities in symptoms and recovery periods and the fact that it's a very contagious bacterial disease (with the same species).
Symptoms of Strep Throat in Dogs
Below are the common symptoms of strep throat in dogs:
- Swallowing Difficulties;
- Low Level of Energy;
- Lack of Appetite;
- Swollen Lymph Nodes.
In looking out for symptoms of illnesses, a good camera such as the Petcube Cam can go a long way. With its innovative features that include AI technology, you can see, talk to, and keep tabs on your pet even when you’re away. Being able to detect symptoms of strep throat and other illnesses early on with a good pet camera can help address the condition.
What’s more amazing is that the Petcube Cam also gives you access to an Online Vet service, allowing you to consult with certified vets anytime and anywhere.
How to Treat a Dog With Strep Throat
Treating strep throat in dogs is generally the same as treating other bacterial infections in dogs. Once diagnosed, your vet will prescribe antibiotics to fight the bacteria that’s causing your dog’s strep throat.
Read more: Best Tips on How to Give your Dog a Pill
Alongside medications, below are some tips for treating a dog with strep throat:
Make sure that your dog has enough rest
It is essential to make sure that your dog can get a lot of rest while their body is fighting the infection.
Keep them hydrated
While suffering from strep throat, dogs may become dehydrated because it will likely be painful for them to swallow. However, hydration is important in the process of recovery. With this in mind, it is best to encourage your dog to drink as much as possible. You may also add moisture to their food to encourage them to ingest more fluids.
Isolate your dog from other dogs
This may help prevent the spread of the illness. Avoid sharing food and water bowls, toys, bedding with other dogs to prevent the bacteria from spreading. Wash bedding and toys thoroughly as well.
Strep throat is highly contagious, and there is no known vaccine for it yet, so it is best to address it early on and follow measures to prevent the spread of infection. Puppies and senior dogs are more susceptible to it since their immune systems are more vulnerable. To prevent strep throat outbreaks, it would help to make sure that your pet has good hygiene and is vaccinated against other respiratory-related pathogens.
How Will the Emergency Fund Help With Treatment
While strep throat doesn’t often lead to emergencies, there are rare cases when dogs experience severe symptoms that warrant emergency veterinary care. In such situations, along with other pet emergencies, it would help to have an emergency fund to help ensure that veterinary bills are covered when you need them the most.
It's a good thing Petcube has a Pet Emergency Fund, which helps give us pet owners peace of mind in times of pet emergencies. The best alternative to pet insurance, the Pet Emergency Fund, offers coverage of $3000 for yearly pet emergencies, which protects up to six pets. Moreover, a plan can be availed of regardless of your dog's or cat’s age, breed, or medical history.
In addition to this, there is no payback, unlike insurance. You also get access to an Online Vet service, where you can consult with certified vets 24/7 via calls and messaging.
Can Strep Be Transmitted Between You and Your Dog
You may be wondering: Can dogs get strep from humans, or can you give your dog strep throat? While humans can get strep throat when exposed to the pathogen Streptococcus pyogenes Group A, strep throat in dogs is caused by the pathogen Streptococcus bacterium Group G.
Because there are different bacteria strains that cause strep throat in dogs and humans, it’s not likely for dogs to get strep throat from humans, and vice versa. While there is a rare possibility for a dog to pass on the infection to a person upon close contact, it is not likely to happen.
Transmission from human to dog and dog to human may not be likely when it comes to strep throat, but it helps to practice good hygiene, especially when anyone at home is ill (whether human or dog) and when there are young, elderly, or immunocompromised people or pets.
What is pharyngitis in dogs?
Pharyngitis in dogs happens when the pharynx, or the walls of a dog’s throat, are swollen. Oftentimes, it accompanies bacterial and viral upper respiratory infections.
What are the common throat problems in dogs?
Among the common throat problems in dogs are pharyngitis, kennel cough, tonsillitis, tracheal collapse, and laryngitis.
What is canine tonsillitis?
Canine tonsillitis happens when there is inflammation in a dog’s tonsils. It can be due to infections or certain allergies.
Strep throat may affect not just humans but dogs too. While the pathogens that cause strep throat are different in dogs and humans, symptoms and the recovery period are similar. To prevent strep throat infections in dogs, it would help to make sure that they have good hygiene.
Meanwhile, keeping their environment clean may go a long way toward preventing them from getting exposed to pathogens that cause strep throat and other illnesses as well.