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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question

Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 24468
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience.
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I think my dog and cat have rat flu they have both been sneezing

Customer Question

I think my dog and cat have rat flu they have both been sneezing a lot they. Have taken clavaseptin prednicare and metacam for it but it was'nt strong enough they won't give anything stronger to the dog because they think it's too dangerous because he has Cushing's disease and takes a lot of medication for it he did have pneumonia as well and the cat has aids and doesn't go out anymore
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
Dr. Michael Salkin :

I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. I'm not familiar with the term "rat flu". "Rat fever" is caused by the bite of a rodent which is carrying one of two bacteria in its mouth - either Strep or Spirillum. Please clarify. It's unlikely that the dog and cat are sharing the same infection. Both are immunocompromised, however, and are more susceptible to infection. In general, prescribing a broad spectrum antibiotic such as Clavaseptin is appropriate for both of your pets and both can be prescribed another broad spectrum antibiotic - this time in the fluoroquinolone class such as enrofloxacin if the Clavaseptin isn't helpful. If necessary, advanced testing can be performed by culturing the nose or nasopharynx of your pets in order to determine just which bacteria are present and then which antibiotic would be best to prescribe. This is likely to be more helpful in your dog than cat because your cat is likely to be sneezing due to the feline herpesvirus which doesn't respond to antibiotics but, instead, an antiviral drug such as famcyclovir.

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