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Small Animal Faecal Pathogens PCR test

Small Animal Faecal Pathogens PCR test put to use in a multi cat household


Recently, Casey and Cranbourne Veterinary Hospital investigated a case of two cats in a multi cat household that had ongoing diarrhoea, varying from soft, to mucoid to bloody then intermittently normal, solid stools.

One was a 6 month old, blind, male rescue kitten who arrived into the household two months earlier and started with diarrhoea almost immediately. More often than not, he had bloody diarrhoea.

The other cat was a 2 year old, speyed female, domestic short hair, who developed soft stools with occasional blood a month after the kitten came into the household.

Both cats had been treated at another vet clinic a few weeks earlier and were given a course of metronidazole as well as febantel for possible giardiasis.  The diarrhoea persisted so a diarrhoea panel was performed on 19/3/18 on faeces from the rescue kitten. This panel was evaluated by a different pathology laboratory. The only pathogen detected was coronavirus. The kitten was prescribed another course of metronidazole for 7 days.

Casey and Cranbourne Veterinary Hospital first examined both cats on 12/4/18. Both were physically well but still had intermittent diarrhoea with blood despite medication prescribed by the previous vet. Faecal samples from both cats were provided by the owner. The kitten’s faecal sample was formed but the adult cat’s sample was brown coloured diarrhoea, no frank blood, no malaena.

Both faecal samples were sent to Gribbles Pathology for the Small Animal Faecal Pathogens PCR test.

Both tests came back positive for campylobacter, clostridium perfringens cpa gene and coronavirus.

Both cats were treated with a five day course of erythromycin for the campylobacter infection and to date, their diarrhoea has resolved and not recurred.

- Dr Leanne Versteege BVSc (Hons) – Clinical Director, Casey and Cranbourne Veterinary Hospital

Here at Gribbles Veterinary Pathology, we offer Small Animal Faecal Pathogens PCR testing to detect the presence of infectious agents by identifying the genomic material of the agent being investigated. Our testing is more sensitive and specific than other available tests including culture (in particular for viruses) and is often more rapid than culture, enabling treatment to be prompt and efficient.

For more information, visit Small Animal Faecal Pathogens PCR, or call (03) 9538 6740.