Dog Infection of the Uterus
There are three types of uterus infections: metritis, inflammation of the whole uterus; endometriosis, inflammation of the lining of the uterus; and pyrometer, pus in the uterus.
The first two, metritis and endometriosis, are evidenced by swelling throughout the whole reproductive tract. Even the vulva is swollen. These conditions are more or less tied up with the aftermath of birth but also occur following an accident such as a gunshot wound or sonic another type of injury, as well as unknown causes that can occasion the uterus to become inflamed.
Pyrometer is different. It occurs in between mating cycles. The small, resting uterus normally no larger in diameter than a soda straw, but with thicker walls fills with bacteria that proliferate in enormous numbers, causing pus formation until the uterus is distended to seemingly incredible proportions. The kidneys, which have tried to handle the wastes of such a problem, may be seriously damaged by it.
With infections of this sort, the abdomen becomes distended, the temperature is generally fairly high, and the bitch often has a great thirst. A yellowish discharge from the vulva with a fetid, sickish-sweet odor is an obvious symptom, often being sufficiently copious to wet the tail and hind legs and attract flies in warm weather. Some species of flies will lay eggs in the moist hair, and maggots develop. The vulva is somewhat larger than normal. The bitch loses her appetite, becomes thin and somewhat potbellied, is weak with a tottery gait, and has a generally unhealthy appearance.
When this condition develops it is best to have the uterus and ovaries removed. Intravenous fluids during and after the operation greatly increase the chalices of success, and few bitches die when the whole uterus is removed unless it is ruptured and the pus has escaped into the abdomen. It is important to seek help promptly.
A few veterinarians tell us they have corrected pyrometers in one or two bitches without surgery, but most agree that surgery is the only accepted corrective measure. With the use of an experimental drug called Alcidine some years ago, a few cases were cured but the demand did not justify the time and inconvenience of producing the product. The drug was also used to abort pregnant bitches.
The infection occurring in the uterus is known as the pyometra. In case your dog is suffering from the disease you would find that a foul smell is coming out of the vagina when the cervix is open. Apart from abnormal uterus abnormal discharge, you would also find that the dog is feeling lethargic for a continuous period. The dog would also seem to be quite depressed loss of appetite, excessive rate of intake of water, and consequent high level of urination. The dog would also be having pale gums accompanied by a tendency to vomit, diarrhea, and other abdominal malfunction. In the case of open pyometra, it is not quite difficult for the vet to diagnose the disease but blood tests, X-rays, and ultrasound is conducted in case closed pyometra is suspected.
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