ISSUE: Canine Anthrax?
JamieJamie Writes:
Dear Mickey and members of the think tank,
    Can dogs get anthrax?  What are the symptoms?  What is the treatment? Are wise and thoughtful dogs concerned or am I a victim of the media?
A concerned Jamie
RESPONSES FROM THE BOARD

MickeyMickey
Jamie,
    Cows are the only animals I've heard of that can get anthrax (and maybe ants).  Let's hope dogs can't, but I don't really know.  Good think-tank topic.  We'll all learn in the process and maybe figure out something that can help the humans.
Mick 


Dummy
Dear Mickey,
   I have been mulling over Jamie Walker's query, and have even been in touch with Dr. Betz's office who confirms that we, as well as our human, feline, equine and assanine friends are susceptible to anthrax.  But is this something that we should take into account in planning our daily activities?
     I am told that a number of local pet tenders have called in because their animal companions have the sniffles, and they have been worried about anthrax. And of course the same thought occurs to folks with the flu.  But there have been no local positives yet as far as I know.  I wonder if there have been any canine positives anywhere?  I certainly hope that the post office is not employing us canines as mail sniffers !  That would be too unkind!     Anyway, to go back, the situation needs to be put into perspective. What are the probabilities of contracting a deadly form of anthrax relative to being involved in a traffic accident, or  even being claimed by the west Nile virus?  And  is the present level of media coverage helpful  or unhelpful to the length and  quality of our lives -- and the quality of life of those dispatching the anthrax?   There must be good news somewhere that the media could mention in passing, but you would hardly know it!
Yours, as always,
Dummy Whittome

Mayu and Kiri
Hi Mickey,
We, like Dummy, are concerned about the search and rescue dogs.  If they sniff out any mail or packages that have anthrax, they might get it and it won't be detected until it is too late.  It only takes 24 hrs to kill a deer from the report we read.  It usually can't be detected in cattle until it is too late.
Is there some way we can warn their owners and handlers that dogs can get anthrax?  Can they be vaccinated like the cattle are??    Perhaps through AKC or Infodog web site we can get the word out.
InfoDog - The Dog Fancier's Complete Resource for information
AKC - American Kennel Club for Purebred Dogs
Hope this has been helpful.
Mayu and Kiri

Lucille
Dear Mickey,
Anthrax for Canines:
I have heard about this Anthrax stuff on the TV. Frankly it frightens me terribly. I for one am NOT taking any chances. I will not "fetch" the mail nor will I be opening, reading or handling the mail. I also will not be paying any bills. These humans are the ones running around in the stores buying things and running up light bills and such. If these humans want to engage in these risky activities then they will have to be responsible to fetch the mail and pay the bills without my help.
Humans could take a lesson from us canines. If you have ever been to a doggie beach or playground you will see canines cooperating and working together to have a grand, happy, romping good time. We never judge one another on the color of fur, the presence of absence of a tail, ears up or down, we accept canines of all breeds and abilities as friends. We may bark and growl menacingly when provoked, we may even take a bite or two but we never attack other canines just for kicks. So to you my furry little companions, be safe and leave the dangerous stuff to the humans!
Fuzzy hugs and snorts
Lucille

Winston
Well, I watched the TV show "The Agency" last night, and the storyline featured anthrax. And guess what? A kennel owner, his wife, and 24 greyhounds were killed by the dreaded stuff!!!!
So, I guess dogs should be careful too. But I wouldn't get too scared, because not too many dogs get mail, and you have to be realistic. Also, I know that my American friends are all very brave. So I think you should go about your days playing ball, and all the other stuff you normally do, and don't let anyone turn brave dogs into "scaredy cats"!
Winston
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