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Canine Brucellosis: Brucella canis

Posted: 08 Jun 2012 12:46 PM PDT
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Thu 7 Jun 2012
From: Badiaa El Imad [edited]

A 3 year old girl was admitted to our hospital with cough and mild shortness of breath and low grade fever for one day. She became asymptomatic the following day and, with a normal peripheral white blood count and normal chest radiogram, she was discharged only to be recalled several days later because a blood culture drawn upon admission was growing a small Gram negative bacillus that did not grow on MacConkey agar. At that time, she was totally asymptomatic and afebrile. She had no ill contacts, no significant travel, was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, and there were 2 dogs in the house, an adult given to the family by friends 8 years ago and a puppy obtained from a breeder.

A follow up blood culture was obtained, which also became positive for the same appearing Gram negative bacillus, after which she was readmitted, and another blood culture also revealed the same small, unencapsulated Gram negative coccobacillus that grew aerobically, was catalase-positive and identified by the New York City Department of Health and Human Services as Brucella canis.

Subsequently, the adult dog was found to be antibody positive for B. canis and was found to be blood culture positive for the organism. The puppy was blood culture and antibody negative.

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