Animal & Bird Medical Center of Palm Harbor
Medical Database

Infectious Disease

Infectious Hepatitis in Dogs

Animals Affected – Dog

General Information
Infectious canine hepatitis (ICH) is a serious viral disease that affects the liver, kidneys, lymph nodes, eyes, and other organs.

Nearly all dogs are exposed to ICH virus at some time during their lives, but not all dogs become gravely ill. The disease may be so mild that it passes unnoticed or may be so severe that death occurs within a few hours of the first signs of illness.

Signs of ICH develop about a week after exposure to the virus. High fever, loss of appetite, increased thirst, tonsillitis, and reddening of the lining of the mouth, throat, and eyelids may occur. In some cases, there is bloody diarrhea. The virus may be present in any body secretion and may be present in the urine for up to 6 to 9 months after apparent recovery. A bluish cast to the eye may occur during the recovery period.

A highly effective vaccine is available to prevent ICH. All dogs should be immunized yearly. People are not susceptible to ICH.

Important Points in Treatment
1. Hospitalization is required for initial treatment. Intravenous fluids and other intensive measures are often necessary. Various blood and laboratory tests are necessary to evaluate the response to treatment.

An Important Update From Animal & Bird Medical Center On COVID-19

We are committed to offering a safe and healthy environment for our clients, pets and hospital team here at Animal and Bird Medical Center. The best way to avoid becoming ill is to avoid exposure to the virus. Taking typical preventive actions is key.

In being cautious and mindful of everyone’s safety, we are actively working to minimize your exposure to crowded exam rooms and long waits in the lobby.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have made some changes to our protocols in-hospital for the time-being…

In order to limit exposure while still providing quality care for your pet, we will be implementing special protocols to keep you safe.

We will have our veterinary technicians get a history of the patient’s symptoms and owner’s concerns via phone prior to coming into the clinic.

  • Upon arrival, owners can call us from the curb in front of the clinic and we will have a technician assistant come to your car and bring your pet inside.
  • From here, your pet will be examined and the doctor will develop a treatment plan which he will then communicate via phone with the owner.
  • At the end of the visit, an invoice will be brought out to your car and payment can be taken via phone.

Our goal is for you to be able to bring your pet in for medical care but have no risk for you or our dedicated staff of transmitting the COVID-19 virus.

The Doctors and staff are dedicated to making sure your pet’s medical needs are taken care of during this national crisis.

We can still fill prescriptions for pick up, however, for those who prefer, non-narcotic and non-urgent prescriptions can be mailed to your home.

As always, careful hand-washing and other infection control practices can greatly reduce the chance of spreading any disease.