Salmonella spp

From Dog
Salmonella under electron microscopy

Salmonella spp are a broad group of Gram-negative intracellular zoonotic proteobacteria which constitutes about 2% of the normal canine microbiota[1].

These bacteria are normally found in the environment and within contaminated food[2], especially meat.

Within the host, Salmonella can adopt an intracellular lifestyle in epithelial cells, fibroblasts, macrophages, dendritic cells and other immune cells[3].

Species which are pathogenic to dogs include:

  • Salmonella enterica var typhimurium[4]
  • Salmonella enterica var enteritidis
  • Salmonella Montevideo[5]
  • Salmonella Give
  • Salmonella Corvallis[6]

Salmonella is often associated with bacterial enteritis and may be an initiating agent or secondarily involved. Dogs that are fed raw meat are more likely to shed Salmonella in their feces than dogs fed commercial diets, serving as a source of Salmonella exposure to humans through household contamination[7].

Clinical signs in dogs with salmonella infections are usually mild or a self-limiting diarrhea, however, acute systemic bacteremia does occur[8].

Acute salmonellosis is associated with fever, hemorrhagic diarrhea, lymphadenopathy and is sometimes fatal, preceded by pneumonia and seizures[9].

In most cases, an overabundance of Clostridium difficile, Clostridium perfringens, Campylobacter jejuni and Escherichia coli is commonly found[10] and other pathogens are often co-involved, such as enteric coronavirus, parvovirus, distemper, protozoa such as Cryptosporidium spp[11] and endoparasites[12].

Diagnosis is based on clinical signs, microbial culture of fecal samples, ELISA and PCR assays.

Treatment usually requires broad-spectrum antimicrobials such as amoxycillin/clavulanate and cephalosporins, although resistance is common[13]. Most serovars are sensitive to ciprofloxacin and ceftriaxone[14].

Basic practices of isolation, use of appropriate protective equipment, and proper cleaning and disinfection are the mainstays of control.


  1. Tupler T et al (2012) Enteropathogens identified in dogs entering a Florida animal shelter with normal feces or diarrhea. J Am Vet Med Assoc 241(3):338-343
  2. Selmi M et al (2011) Contaminated commercial dehydrated food as source of multiple Salmonella serotypes outbreak in a municipal kennel in Tuscany. Vet Ital 47(2):183-190
  3. Hölzer SU & Hensel M (2012) Divergent roles of Salmonella pathogenicity island 2 and metabolic traits during interaction of S. enterica serovar typhimurium with host cells. PLoS One 7(3):e33220
  4. Bagcigil AF et al (2007) Fecal shedding of Salmonella spp. in dogs. J Vet Med Sci 69(7):775-777
  5. Schotte U et al (2007) Salmonella Montevideo outbreak in military kennel dogs caused by contaminated commercial feed, which was only recognized through monitoring. Vet Microbiol 119(2-4):316-323
  6. Kocabiyik AL et al (2006) Detection of Salmonella spp. in stray dogs in Bursa Province, Turkey: first isolation of Salmonella Corvallis from dogs. J Vet Med B Infect Dis Vet Public Health 53(4):194-196
  7. Lenz J et al (2009) Perceptions, practices, and consequences associated with foodborne pathogens and the feeding of raw meat to dogs. Can Vet J 50(6):637-643
  8. Weese JS (2011) Bacterial enteritis in dogs and cats: diagnosis, therapy, and zoonotic potential. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 41(2):287-309
  9. Dow SW et al (1989) Bacterial culture of blood from critically ill dogs and cats: 100 cases (1985-1987). J Am Vet Med Assoc 195(1):113-117
  10. Marks SL et al (2011)
  11. Strohmeyer RA et al (2006) Evaluation of bacterial and protozoal contamination of commercially available raw meat diets for dogs. J Am Vet Med Assoc 228(4):537-542
  12. Stavisky J et al (2011) A case-control study of pathogen and lifestyle risk factors for diarrhoea in dogs. Prev Vet Med 99(2-4):185-192
  13. Leonard EK et al (2012) Comparison of antimicrobial resistance patterns of Salmonella spp. and Escherichia coli recovered from pet dogs from volunteer households in Ontario (2005-06). J Antimicrob Chemother 67(1):174-181
  14. Tsai HJ et al (2007) Salmonellae and campylobacters in household and stray dogs in northern Taiwan. Vet Res Commun 31(8):931-939