Tyzzer's disease is an uncommon disease of cats and dogs and is caused by Clostridium piliformis. Cl. piliformis is part of the normal intestinal flora of many rodents, but can cause clinical disease if the host is immunosuppressed in some way.
Cats and dogs are thought to become infected through contact with rodents and may also be more susceptible to disease if immunosuppressed or under stress.
Cl. piliformis replicates inside intestinal epithelial cells, may cause iliocolitis and may spread to cause focal necrotic hepatitis.
- rapid onset anorexia;
- abdominal pain and distension;
- hepatomegaly and, possibly, jaundice;
- death within 2 days.
Diagnosis is usually made post mortem, based on gross and microscopic lesions and isolation of Cl. piliformis.
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