My 13 year old mixed Lab was recently diagnosed with ehrlichiosis through a blood test…

My 13 year old mixed Lab was recently diagnosed with ehrlichiosis through a blood test. I have gotten some conflicting information through my local animl hopital and my own research, so I thought I’d try you guys. My dog shows none of the symptoms of ehrlichiosis but the vet has prescribed a 60 day course of 250 mg of dioxycycline to treat it. This is about $400 worth of pills at my local pharmacy. Are there other treatment options and does my dog even need treatment if he has no symptoms?

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Krista Magnifico
7 years ago

Hello Judith, Of all the questions to ask!! This is a doozie…primarily because there is heated debate on why we use this test, and what to do about it if you get a positive test in an asymptomatic dog… In the interest of maintaining my "always be honest" viewpoint, and my ever present belief that it is not my place to be second guessing a fellow colleague, I will try to provide a basic overview of the discussion that I have with my clients when a situation like yours arises. I am assuming that your vet used an in house… Read more »

Krista Magnifico
7 years ago

OH! Big important point to mention:
The best way to manage all tick borne diseases is to avoid them in the first place, with the use of an effective and safe flea and tick preventative applied monthly (or anytime there is weather warm enough for them to be awake and active)..and/or by using a veterinary applied vaccine to prevent future disease.

Krista Magnifico, DVM
Owner Jarrettsville Veterinary Center
Jarrettsville, MD