Canine Valley Fever

Sep 15, 2016

Valley Fever in Dogs

Coccidioidomycosis, commonly known as valley fever, is a disease that can be contracted by dogs in the southwestern United States. By being informed about the cause and symptoms associated with valley fever, early treatment can be sought and your dog can go on to lead a normal life.

Cause
Valley fever in dogs is caused by the fungus Coccidioides immitis, which lives in the desert soils of California, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. The spores become airborne when the soil is disturbed and is inhaled into the lungs. These spores then proliferate inside the lungs. The disease occurs when a dog’s immune system cannot kill the spores fast enough. Sometime, the spores may spread from the lungs to the rest of the body. Approximately 30% of dogs who inhale the spores will develop valley fever.

Symptoms
Early symptoms of valley fever in dogs include loss of appetite and energy, coughing, fever, and weight loss. If the disease spreads past the lungs, symptoms will include swelling, seizures, lameness, pain in the back and neck region, and skin ulcerations.

Treatment
Treatment with antifungal medication is used and can continue for a 6 to 12 month period. The 3 most common medications are Ketoconazole, Fluconazole, and Itaconazole. Because it tends to be absorbed the best and has fewer side effects, Fluconazole is frequently used. Ketoconazole needs vitamin C to help with absorption, and skin reactions are common with Itrconazole.

Presently, holistic treatment of valley fever in dogs has not been tested. If holistic methods are used, it is usually used in combination with an antifungal medication to support the dogs overall health. It is best to consult with a holistic veterinarian about the various options available.

Prognosis
The prognosis for valley fever in dogs is generally good, especially if caught early. If the disease spread through the body, medication may be required for life. A dog can relapse once treatment is over, and if it occurs more than once, they may also require lifelong treatment.

If you suspect your dog may have valley fever, please seek medical attention right away. By catching and treating this disease early, your dog has an excellent chance of leading a long, happy, and healthy life.



Valley Fever Natural Remedies  

Posted by Christie (Las Vegas) on 11/19/2013

I just found out our almost 3 year old mixed dog has valley fever. She didn't show any of the symptoms until the infection spread to her bones. Treatment is expensive and she would have to be on it for the rest of her life, which could cause more health issues including liver failure. Are there any other natural remedies for this disease I could try?

Replied by Theresa
Mpls., Mn
11/20/2013

Hey Christie!

Valley Fever - Coccidioidomycosis - is a fungal infection of the lungs.

To start, it would be a good idea to alkalize your dog's system to create a hostile environment for the fungus. This is easily done by adding baking soda to your dog's water. Read up and choose a formula here:

http://earthclinic.com/remedies/alkalizing_formulas.html

Sublimed Sulpher may be an option for you - info here:

http://www.wikihow.com/Treat-a-Dog-Naturally-for-Valley-Fever

http://www.goldacregoldens.com/valleyfvr.html

Consider Oregano Oil for its antifungal properties:

http://earthclinic.com/supplements/oregano-oil.html

Colloidal Silver may also be indicated for your dog:

http://earthclinic.com/supplements/colloidal_silver.html

Consider treating nutritionally for Candida, as yeast and fungus are one in the same:

http://earthclinic.com/cures/cure-candida-infection-herbal-remedies.html

Lastly, consider inhalation of food grade hydrogen peroxide:

http://earthclinic.com/remedies/hydrogen_peroxide_inhalation.html

These remedies are commonly available and may be found at your drugstore, whole foods co-op or health/vitamin store. I find when I need to dose many pills that it helps to put the pills in a ball of canned wet food. You can even dose the liquids in this way by putting them in a size 00 gel cap available at most pharmacies.

Please keep us posted and report back!

Replied by Desertmoonchild
Tucson, Arizona
09/14/2016

I was recently informed that my 3 year old boxer mix has valley fever. This diagnosis was given by several people who live in my area and also have pets with valley fever. I was given fluconazole by someone treating their dog. I had approximately 2 weeks worth of medication and by the end of the two weeks my dog had improved greatly, from his energy level to his overall spirit. I was unable to find the medication and there is no way I can afford to take him to the vet. While hopeful that I would find a way, and be able to get him back on meds he started having more seizures and he had 4 seizures in 1 day. I got a weeks worth of meds for him and the seizures stopped. Back to feeling good and happy I tried to purchase medication online only to be ripped off for $56.

I am still looking for a way to treat my dog that I can afford and am hoping to get him back on some kind of treatment before the seizures begin again. I am hoping someone has an affordable answer for me. I actually have two boxer mixes, brothers, but only my dog Jasper has shown the symptoms of valley fever. The symptoms began around the end of march this year. I do not want to see Jasper suffers with the seizures especially or see his brother mica suffer because he died or had to be put to sleep. Please help, anybody. I am open to natural remedies also.

Replied by Theresa
Mpls., Mn
09/15/2016

Hello Desertmoonchild,

I know the vet is expensive, but it may be cheaper in the long run to pay for a vet and get a prescription for the antifungal meds that you can fill cheaply online than to delay treatment while you look for cheaper options than your vet.

That said, check out all of these links from the post above:

Valley Fever - Coccidioidomycosis - is a fungal infection of the lungs.

To start, it would be a good idea to alkalize your dog's system to create a hostile environment for the fungus. This is easily done by adding baking soda to your dog's water. Read up and choose a formula here:

http://earthclinic.com/remedies/alkalizing_formulas.html

Sublimed Sulpher may be an option for you - info here:

http://www.wikihow.com/Treat-a-Dog-Naturally-for-Valley-Fever

http://www.goldacregoldens.com/valleyfvr.html

Consider Oregano Oil for its antifungal properties:

http://earthclinic.com/supplements/oregano-oil.html

Colloidal Silver may also be indicated for your dog:

http://earthclinic.com/supplements/colloidal_silver.html

Consider treating nutritionally for Candida, as yeast and fungus are one in the same:

http://earthclinic.com/cures/cure-candida-infection-herbal-remedies.html

Lastly, consider inhalation of food grade hydrogen peroxide:

http://earthclinic.com/remedies/hydrogen_peroxide_inhalation.html

These remedies are commonly available and may be found at your drugstore, whole foods co-op or health/vitamin store. I find when I need to dose many pills that it helps to put the pills in a ball of canned wet food. You can even dose the liquids in this way by putting them in a size 00 gel cap available at most pharmacies.

**In addition to the above often homeopathic remedies tend to be on the less expensive/more affordable end of the scale. Please read up on using homeopathy to treat Valley Fever:

http://familyhomeopathyinc.com/fhiwp/tag/holistic-treatment-for-valley-fever/

Please report back!