Lyme Disease in Puppy

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Barked: Sat Feb 2, '13 3:09pm PST 
I have a six month old Cane Corso puppy. After his first Lyme shot and before his second one we had a dog play date at a friends house. We couldn't of been there more than 5 hours and at the end of the day we found a tick in our puppy. We removed it.

He got his second Lyme shot and time had went by. When we was around 5 months he started limping and was very lethargic. The vet suspected Lyme but we were confused how he could have gotten Lyme after being vaccinated. Plus, I had read something about Lyme disease taking awhile to develop (tick needing to be in for 12+ hours). So we used doxycline and it went away immediately.

Now around 6 months my pup got kennel cough at dog day care (he was vaccinated for that one too)! So once again he's on doxycline. His kennel cough was gone in a day or so. Now he's limping and acting lethargic again. But he's still on doxycline.

What do we do at this point? I don't get why our pup keeps catching everything he was vaccinated against. But what happens with Lyme. Is this going to continue to happen for the rest of his life? And how do we get it to go away if the doxycline doesn't work anymore? Please help!

Code name:- Farmcollie
Barked: Sat Feb 2, '13 4:00pm PST 
Vets often don't treat with enough antibiotic or for long enough when dealing with tick borne diseases. My friend's dog ended up with chronic lyme for this reason. You don't say how long your pup was treated or what his dosage was based on his weight in your post, so I can't tell you if that was the problem or not. I think the two-shot vaccination is a newer one, and I don't know how effective it is, especially if the dog did not get the second shot.

I highly suggest you read this web page for details on tick borne diseases:
Linkage to tick borne disease page

It has a lot of information about testing for and treatment of tick borne diseases, including lyme.

If you want more focused help on this issue, the discussion list mentioned on that webpage is excellent and full of helpful people:

Tick list subscription page

Edited by author Sat Feb 2, '13 4:01pm PST


Code name:- Farmcollie
Barked: Sat Feb 2, '13 4:14pm PST 
Sorry, got interrupted in posting.

How was your dog diagnosed in the first place? Idexx Snap test done with blood in house at your vet? Was an antibody titer ever sent out?

You should also keep in mind there are many reasons that a young dog might go lame. Injuries and panosteitis are also possibilities. Unfortunately, it sometimes takes time and multiple vet visits to determine what the problem really is.


Barked: Tue Feb 5, '13 2:13pm PST 
Thanks for the help and resources! Let me try to answer your questions the best I can.

He did get his second shot for lyme. It was just that we found that tick in him in between shots. Again we removed it immediately and we were only at our friends house about 5 hours or so. So it didn't stay in him long.

I'm not sure of the dosage or length of time we were on the antibiotic. I have since thrown them out. I know it was 2 pills twice a day.

And no, they have not done any testing for this. I've brought it up and they keep mentioning it'll get done with heartworm.
Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
Barked: Tue Feb 5, '13 2:51pm PST 
I would strongly suggest the testing. Most likely, being a large breed puppy, he has panosteoitis and is being given antibiotics for nothing!!!!
MANY vets don't recognize this, and fail to even consider it as a cause of intermittent limping. A simple xray will show the inflammation in the long bones if he has that, BUT... it is self limiting and he should outgrow it.
What are you feeding him???? He should be on a quality LARGE BREED puppy food, which is believed to help limit the severity of pano.
Furthermore, antibiotics are not going to help kennel cough at all since it is a virus, just like the common cold in people. IF he gets a bacterial infection as the result of it, such as pneumonia, then antibiotics are indicated.
I would suggest finding another vet who will do the proper testing BEFORE guessing at a disease and throwing meds at a dog that perhaps doesn't even need them!!!

Edited by author Tue Feb 5, '13 2:54pm PST


Code name:- Farmcollie
Barked: Tue Feb 5, '13 4:34pm PST 
I have to agree with Toto. I can't imagine ANY vet treating a dog for lyme when there is no confirmation that the lameness could be lyme!

Member Since
Barked: Thu Feb 7, '13 8:13am PST 
Yes I agree with what you're saying and have been thinking about this for awhile. I think I'd prefer a more hollistic veterinary. And our dog is on a raw diet.