Neospora Caninum

Does anyone on this list have any experience with this parasite? I have recently been switching him over to a BARF diet.

I had to take Toby to the veterinary college yesterday for an emergency visit. During the night Thursday Toby woke me up with whining, banging and rattling his collar. I found him stuck under a chair in the bedroom and when I got him untangled, he continued to move around in circles. My first thoughts were some kind of nerve poison but after watching him awhile, he seemed to have gone blind suddenly.

My vet sent me straight over to the Veterinärhochschule in Hannover where we spent most of the day. He was seen by the ophthalmologist, the neurologist, the cardiologist, had lots of blood taken, x-rays, an echo cardiogram, an mri, a spinal tap, and I don't remember what else! He was very well taken care of. The final diagnosis is nerve damage that is causing his optic nerve to malfunction, and some nerve damage that is causing difficulty in walking. There is no tumor or infection so we currently have a mystery.

They kept him overnight to perform more tests; it's already after noon here and they haven't called yet. While waiting I am (naturally) trying to second guess and doing amateur research on the net. Any help will be appreciated.:(

Can't help you much other than to send good wishes your way. Keep us posted.

How old is he? Could it be Vestibular?
http://www.canine-epilepsy.com/vestibular.html

Not much help from me but just wanted to say that I hope you get to the bottom of this and he makes a speedy recovery.

Toby is staying at the veterinary hospital over the weekend. They are looking to see if he does have a seizure. I was told also that he is alert, and hungry, so good signs!

A quick internet search seems to imply that it is possible to contract from the raw diet by way of eating infected beef. Hard to say, exactly however, since research has really not been done to any real extent. Still, it may be something to consider…? I believe one article suggested that freezing the beef first may eliminate the bacteria. Again, people have been feeding raw for a long time w/out a huge problem, but it also makes sense that with more people feeding raw there may be an increased incidence IF IF it is related.

I did find this:

http://www.naturalholistic.com/handouts/neospora.htm

excerpt:

What are the probabilities of contracting the parasite? If the parasite is present in the muscle of affected cattle and the beef is ingested, the digestive juices do not inactivate the organism so it can, theoretically, create a problem. However, when you think about the large number of people that have been feeding raw food diets for decades and the insignificant number of cases being reported in dogs, you have to consider two obvious explanations. The first is that there are a larger number of cases that are going undiagnosed or being blamed on other things. This is possible but the more likely possibility is that this is an opportunistic organism that only preys on animals with an immune system that is compromised in some other way. This might account for the fact that the vast majority of cases are in young dogs and puppies and follow the same model as Toxoplasmosis and coccidiosis.

What steps can be taken to eliminate or limit our pets’ exposure? I am still not convinced that a healthy, holistically cared for pet is the optimal candidate for contracting this parasite. In my discussions with the experts on Neospora, I was led to believe that the treatment of meat to inactivate Toxoplasmosis should also inactivate Neospora. We know that cooking will do this, but it was also interesting to find out that freezing the meat for 24 hours should also kill the organism. The parasitologists were less specific on the use of grapefruit seed extract or food grade hydrogen peroxide to treat the meat. I do, however, feel that this has been effective in dealing with Toxoplasmosis. I base this on the fact that I have never seen or even recall hearing of a case in an animal under good holistic care and being fed a treated, raw food diet. This is not to say it has not and cannot happen but I have yet to see a case.

A quick internet search seems to imply that it is possible to contract from the raw diet by way of eating infected beef. Hard to say, exactly however, since research has really not been done to any real extent. Still, it may be something to consider…? I believe one article suggested that freezing the beef first may eliminate the bacteria. Again, people have been feeding raw for a long time w/out a huge problem, but it also makes sense that with more people feeding raw there may be an increased incidence IF IF it is related.

I did find this:

http://www.naturalholistic.com/handouts/neospora.htm

excerpt:

What are the probabilities of contracting the parasite? If the parasite is present in the muscle of affected cattle and the beef is ingested, the digestive juices do not inactivate the organism so it can, theoretically, create a problem. However, when you think about the large number of people that have been feeding raw food diets for decades and the insignificant number of cases being reported in dogs, you have to consider two obvious explanations. The first is that there are a larger number of cases that are going undiagnosed or being blamed on other things. This is possible but the more likely possibility is that this is an opportunistic organism that only preys on animals with an immune system that is compromised in some other way. This might account for the fact that the vast majority of cases are in young dogs and puppies and follow the same model as Toxoplasmosis and coccidiosis.

What steps can be taken to eliminate or limit our pets’ exposure? I am still not convinced that a healthy, holistically cared for pet is the optimal candidate for contracting this parasite. In my discussions with the experts on Neospora, I was led to believe that the treatment of meat to inactivate Toxoplasmosis should also inactivate Neospora. We know that cooking will do this, but it was also interesting to find out that freezing the meat for 24 hours should also kill the organism. The parasitologists were less specific on the use of grapefruit seed extract or food grade hydrogen peroxide to treat the meat. I do, however, feel that this has been effective in dealing with Toxoplasmosis. I base this on the fact that I have never seen or even recall hearing of a case in an animal under good holistic care and being fed a treated, raw food diet. This is not to say it has not and cannot happen but I have yet to see a case.

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