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Most dogs who become infected with Valley Fever will not even require treatment. In fact, some dogs may even become immune to this disease. However, when a dog does become ill from Valley Fever, it can become very serious. In order to seek Valley Fever in dogs treatment, you will need to keep an eye on symptoms and bring your dog to the veterinarian as soon as symptoms become present.
Your veterinarian will diagnose dog Valley Fever a couple different ways. Your vet will perform a physical exam to check the joints and muscles. Blood tests may be required if the infection has spread through the blood system. X-rays and radiographs may also be performed to check the lungs and joints. Once your veterinarian has diagnosed dog Valley Fever, treatment will begin right away.
If your dog is quickly and properly diagnosed, treatment is usually very successful. However, sometimes treatment can take up to a year to complete. The most important part of treatment is to ensure that the fungal organisms do not continue to multiple and to prevent them from spreading to other areas of the body, otherwise known as becoming disseminated. Some treatments for Valley Fever in dogs include:
Anti-fungal medication – Oral anti-fungal medications are the most effective form of treatment. Often times, anti-fungal medications must be given twice a day for 6 months up to a year. In severe cases, sometimes even longer. Anti-fungal medications require close monitoring and frequent blood testing, as some medications can create serious illnesses in dogs.
Cough medication – If your dog has a severe cough, your veterinarian may prescribe a mild cough suppressant.
Diet – Some dogs may lose their appetite when they are infected with dog Valley Fever. In this case, home cooked meals, hand-feeding or even feeding tubes may be required to ensure your dog is eating enough food. IV fluids may be given as well to ensure hydration.
Antibiotics – Your veterinarian may prescribe antibiotics to ensure a secondary illness does not interfere with treatment for dog Valley Fever.
Pain medication – If your dog has a severe fever, or his joints are sore, your veterinarian may prescribe pain medication or anti-inflammatory medications to ease swelling and pain.
The respiratory form of dog Valley fever has a much higher chance of recovery than the disseminated form. Often times, if the infection is severe enough, dog Valley Fever can be fatal. Seek treatment as soon as you notice any symptoms in your dog.