Infectious canine hepatitis is a viral disease that targets the functional parts of the organs, including the liver, kidneys, eyes and blood vessels. The danger of this illness varies from dog to dog, so if you notice any of the symptoms below, don’t hesitate to speak with our friendly staff at Kedron Veterinary Clinic.


What Causes Canine Hepatitis?

Unvaccinated dogs are at the highest risk of contracting this disease if they come into contact with the infectious virus. The virus is initially localised to the tonsils and can show signs within 4-8 days. It then travels into the bloodstream and affects the liver. At a later stage of infection, the virus will be shed through faeces and saliva, making both substances highly infectious to other dogs.

Healthy dogs should be able to clear the viral cells out of the organs within 2 weeks, and it will then be shed from the kidneys into the urine for up to 9 months. Chronic hepatitis can take place in dogs with lower functioning antibody responses.


The Symptoms of Canine Hepatitis

Depending on the severity of your dog’s infection and which stage they are at, you may notice signs of:

  • Fever
  • Dog vomiting and diarrhoea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Anorexia
  • Tonsillitis
  • Enlarged and swollen lymph nodes
  • Eye inflammation and corneal swelling
  • Bruising on the skin


Vomiting and diarrhoea in dogs can be signs of a number of illnesses, ranging from minor to severe. Call your vet as soon as you notice something is wrong.


Prevention and Treatment

The number one way to prevent illnesses such as canine hepatitis is to make sure you stay up to date with your dog vaccination schedule and receive all of the puppy vaccinations that are recommended. When your dog shows the above symptoms, your Brisbane vet will perform a thorough physical exam and make a complete blood profile of your dog.

The early stages of the infection can be treated with fluid therapy to improve hydration and electrolyte balance. Your dog may be given potassium and magnesium supplements. Your vet will ensure your dog’s blood doesn’t show an inability to clot and will treat this accordingly if necessary. Steps will be taken to ensure your dog receives adequate nutrition during the treatment.


Contact Kedron Veterinary Clinic Today

Your veterinarian will be with you every step of the way to monitor your dog’s recovery. If you have noticed any of the above symptoms in your canine, don’t hesitate to get in touch immediately. Call (07) 3857 1785 or contact us online for more information.