How to Treat MRSA in Canines

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MRSA is a resistant bacteria that can infect both dogs and humans, and it is typically treated with antibiotics. Find out how MRSA is unresponsive to many antibiotics with help from a veterinarian in this free video on dog health and MRSA.

Part of the Video Series: Dog Health
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Video Transcript

I'm Dr. Greg McDonald. I own a veterinary hospital in southern California and I'd like to talk a little bit today about a very specific disease. It's called MRSA which stands for methicillin resistant staph aureus. It's MRSA and it is a very, very resistant bacteria. When we're dealing with resistant bacterias it's important because humans can also get this as well as our animals. When we are dealing with something like this the only way to really diagnose it and be certain of what you're dealing with is to do a culture and sensitivity. So if your veterinarian is suspicious that your dog has MRSA they're going to have an infection in your dog that doesn't seem to be responding to antibiotics and he's going to want to do a culture and so if he does a culture he's going to take a little culturette much like this one. We peel this back like that and your veterinarian's going to take and take this little swab like this and rub it right into the wound our the area that's not healing. They're going to take it like that and stick it in here and send this whole thing off to the lab for culture and sensitivity. The lab is going to take this and they're going to put it on a plate, put it under ideal conditions so that the bacteria grows in the laboratory and then they're going to shoot little different types of antibiotics in around it and try to find out which antibiotic works best to control this disease. This is the form that we use to send off to the lab and we require the culture and sensitivity on this form. After about three or four days the lab will send the facts to your veterinarian and tell your veterinarian which antibiotics to use so that this particular resistant bacteria will be cured in your dog. This is a really good antibiotic that we often find works against MRSA. So just to review MRSA is methicillin resistant staph aureus. MRSA. And it's a very, very difficult bacteria simply because it's unresponsive to most of our antibiotics. That makes it very, very dangerous. If we get it sometimes we have to take an amputation of a dogs leg or do something like that. And so this is one of those things that you want to really culture it early, get a diagnosis, find out if there's some antibiotics that'll work against it and try and cure it before it gets to be a disaster for your dog.

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