Kay's Hilltop Boxers
                                          
                                                                                    
Coccidia:
                                               A Cause of Diarrhea


    Coccidia: small protozoans (one-celled organisms) cysts that live in the intestinal tracts of dogs and cats.

    Cockroaches and flies can mechanically carry coccidia from one place to another.

    Mice and other animals can ingest the coccidia and when killed and eaten by a dog, can infect the dog.


    Coccidia development is most common in puppies and kittens less than six months of age.

    In adult dogs whose immune system is suppressed.

    In dogs who are stressed in other ways (e.g.; change in ownership, other disease present).

    It is not uncommon for a seemingly healthy puppy to arrive at his new home and develop diarrhea several days later
    leading to a diagnosis of coccidia.

    An Adult Dog may be a carrier of coccidia, shed the cyst in the feces, but experience no signs or symptoms of coccidia.


    Puppies ‘‘are not ‘‘ born with coccidia.

    Puppies are exposed to the mothers feces, ingest them and coccidia develops in the puppies intestines.

    Young puppies have no immunity to coccidia; the organisms reproduce in great numbers and parasitize the young puppy.

    The primary sign of an animal suffering with coccidia is diarrhea.

    The diarrhea may be mild to severe. Blood and mucous may be present, especially in advanced cases.

    The possibility of coccidia should always be considered when a loose stool or diarrhea is encountered in this age group.

    Coccidia is very contagious, especially among young puppies and spread by feces.

    ****As a puppy ages, he tends to have a natural immunity to the effects of coccidia.
                     
    Coccidia is treatable. Drugs such as sulfadimethoxine (Albon®) and trimethoprim-sulfadiazine (Tribrissen®) have
    been effective in the treatment and prevention of coccidia.  Drug treatments of one to three weeks are usually required.

                   
                                                                If your Boxer is experiencing diarrhea,
                                      see a Vet and have a microscopic fecal test for cocccidia

                                                         Treatment is effective and inexpensive