Animal & Bird Medical Center of Palm Harbor
Medical Database

Infectious Disease


General Information
Tetanus is a disease caused by bacteria (Clostridium tetani) that release a powerful poison (toxin) that spreads throughout the body, seriously disrupting nervous system function. The main signs of the disease are stiffness or rigidity of the limbs, an abnormal sensitivity to touch, and muscle spasms. Spasms of the jaw muscles are the reason the condition is often called “lock jaw.”

Soil and human and animal waste are common sources of the bacteria, and infection most commonly is caused by contamination of a body wound. Usually, 4 to 20 days elapse (incubation time) between the time the bacteria enter the body and the early signs of illness.

Important Points in Treatment
1. Tetanus is a severe life-threatening disease and hospitalization is usually necessary.

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.

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.