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Second recall in less than a month for Diamond Pet Foods | Seabirds carry ectoparasites vast distances | U.C. Davis study links polychlorinated biphenyls and autism
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April 27, 2012
Animal Health SmartBrief
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Veterinary Medicine Update
Second recall in less than a month for Diamond Pet Foods
Salmonella contamination of one bag of Diamond Pet Food's Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul Adult Light Formula dry dog food has led the company to recall bags with four production codes. There have been no canine illnesses reported, but the company has a history of pet food contamination, including one event in 2005 in which dozens of U.S. dogs died after eating food contaminated with fungus. Production was suspended at the plant where the food was made after a separate recall this month.
Google/The Associated Press (4/26) 
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Seabirds carry ectoparasites vast distances
Seabirds travel vast distances around the globe, and they carry ticks with them, colonizing archipelagos with a diversity of tick species, according to new research. Although the tick species evaluated in the study, Ornithodoros capensis, is not known to carry human pathogens, the findings suggest the birds could play a role in dispersal of insect vectors of human pathogens.
ScienceDaily (4/26) 
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U.C. Davis study links polychlorinated biphenyls and autism
Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) could increase the odds that genetically at-risk children will develop autism, according to new research from the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of California, Davis. Although they were outlawed in the 1970s, PCBs persist in the environment.
Psych Central (4/26) 
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Fungus kills frogs by causing electrolyte imbalance and dehydration
Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, the fungus that leads to chytridiomycosis disease and has reduced Sierra Nevada's mountain yellow-legged frog population by 75% in just four years, causes death by altering fluid and electrolyte balance, resulting in dehydration, according to research conducted during the outbreak. Researchers hope their findings will lead to treatments and believe that giving ill frogs electrolyte supplements may provide some help.
LiveScience (4/25) 
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Thousands of fish found dead along Ohio river
The Ohio Division of Wildlife announced that 28,613 fish and other aquatic animals were found dead along a three-mile section of the Rocky River. Officials are searching for a cause of the massive die-off and tallying fines and restitution in case the culprit is found.
The News-Herald (Lake County-Willoughby, Ohio) (4/25) 
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Lincoln Park Zoo fights rabies overseas
The Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago announced this week its one millionth rabies vaccine administered to dogs in Tanzania in an effort to curb rabies proliferation. Not only has the program helped protect Tanzania's lions and wild dogs, whose numbers were declining due to rabies infections, but zoo officials say an estimated 150 human cases of rabies were also prevented.
Belleville News-Democrat (Ill.)/The Associated Press (4/26) 
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Experts offer primer on tick removal, prevention
This year's mild winter means a "big problem" with ticks, which harbor pathogens that can cause Lyme disease and other issues in people and pets, according to veterinarian Rick Alleman, an expert on vector-borne disease and a professor at the University of Florida's veterinary school. In this article, veterinary medicine professionals debunk common tick removal myths and discuss the best tick prevention strategies.
WSLS-TV (Roanoke, Va.)/Vetstreet.com (4/26) 
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Dogs can be treated to slow progression of heart disease
According to veterinarian Lee Pickett, 10% of dogs develop heart disease, mostly as they age. Of those dogs, 75% suffer from chronic valve disease, in which the heart valves degenerate over time, leaving the heart enlarged with compromised function. The disease is often first noticed as a heart murmur. Some veterinarians initiate treatment when X-rays show an enlarged heart, but others wait until additional signs develop. Dr. Pickett also outlines a disaster preparedness pet plan in this column.
Reading Eagle (Pa.) (free content) (4/27) 
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Tips for protecting your company's data from hackers
Hackers are trying to steal valuable company data, but there are some steps you can take to protect your business, writes Jason Fell. Small-business owners should use strong passwords that contain letters, numbers and symbols, and should encrypt sensitive information, he advises.
Entrepreneur online/The Daily Dose blog (4/24) 
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AVMA decries omission of lab authorization from farm bill
A farm bill that cleared the Senate Agriculture Committee this week failed to authorize the National Animal Health Laboratory Network, which is in the news this week for catching a case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy in a California dairy cow. Gina Luke of the American Veterinary Medical Association, who calls the lab a first line of defense against emerging livestock diseases, says the organization has been working to get authorization included in the bill to secure funding. "We think this is an incredibly important laboratory network," Luke said. "It seems like a penny-wise, pound-foolish decision. Our nation could suffer a devastating loss in agriculture were a disease to go undetected."
National Journal (4/26) 
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Frequent feline hairballs are not normal
According to veterinarian Jane Brunt, executive director of the CATalyst Council, more than two hairballs a year is abnormal for any cat, and consulting with a veterinarian is the best way to determine the cause of the problem. The AVMA offers an Animal Tracks podcast by Dr. Brunt on the topic and an educational kids' video on cat hairballs.
CatChannel.com (4/26) 
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Veterinary staff poisoned after dogs vomit phosphine gas
From 2006 to 2011, four veterinary clinics reported that human workers suffered ill effects, ranging from pain and respiratory difficulty to headaches and nausea, after inhaling highly toxic phosphine fumes from the vomitus of dogs who ingested zinc phosphide rodenticide pellets, according the CDC. Veterinarians and owners can also be exposed to the toxic gas when treating horses for phosphine poisoning, according to the AVMA.
U.S. News & World Report/HealthDay News (4/26) 
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Catch up and comment on recent and ongoing AVMA activities with the latest edition of AVMA@Work, our online newsletter blog. View the latest entries of the AVMA@Work blog.
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