What You Need to Know About Raccoon Distemper

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Distemper is the second leading cause of death in raccoons, after people. These creatures are vulnerable to infection to feline and canine distemper. Both may lead to death or severe illness, but two different viruses cause the affliction.

Canine Distemper

This form is a contagious ailment of carnivores caused by a virus that afflicts animals in the Canidae, Procyonidae and Mustelidae families. This type of distemper is a common occurrence in large raccoon populations. Mortality is higher in juveniles compared to adults.

Feline Distemper

This form of distemper is also known as feline panleukopenia or cat fever this is a highly contagious viral ailment that affects Felidae, Procyonida and Mustelidae families.

Signs and Symptoms to Look Out For

Canine distemper begins slowly, it appears as an upper respiratory infection characterized by a runny nose and watery eyes that may develop into conjunctivitis. As the disease deteriorates the health of a raccoon, it may turn into pneumonia. The animal will look weak and thin, and may already have diarrhoea.

In the final stage of the ailment, a raccoon may start wandering aimlessly and appear disoriented, completely oblivious of its surroundings, suffer paralysis or act strangely because of brain damage. Many of the disease’s manifestations are difficult to distinguish from rabies; the best way to determine is through a laboratory test.

Raccoon distemper is cyclical and may wipe out entire colonies if left untreated. Transmission of the disease occurs through airborne droplets and direct contact with droppings, saliva or other bodily fluids.

Feline distemper normally starts with a sudden high fever, followed by vomiting, anorexia diarrhoea and leukopenia. The disease is short, lasts for around a week on average, however, mortality may be at 100% in vulnerable animals. The virus that causes this disease is found in all body excretions and secretions of affected creatures.

There is currently no treatment for feline or canine distemper, making proper control and prevention of utmost importance to prevent the spread of disease. To control its spread, dead animals must be removed from property, vaccination of susceptible pets to reduce the number of hosts and reduction in animal populations.

Humane Animal Removal

You will need the help of experts to humanely and completely get rid of raccoons that infest your property. Getting rid of raccoons them prevents the spread of distemper and other diseases.

Mississauga animal control experts are thorough in their inspection; once they find the location of the den, they begin to remove the babies and the adult raccoons from property. Mississauga animal control companies such as Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control offer tried and tested methods to ensure long-term removal of nuisance wildlife from your home.


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