Mycobacteriosis in Ferrets | Vetlexicon
ferret - Articles

Mycobacteriosis

ISSN 2398-2985


Introduction

  • Cause: infection with Mycobacterium spp.
  • Signs: anorexia, vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss.
  • Diagnosis: cytology, biopsy, histopathology, PCR, culture, radiography, ultrasonography, CBC and serum biochemistries.
  • Treatment: because of the zoonotic risks, Mycobacterium spp cases in pets becomes problematic as to whether or not to treat.

Geographic incidence

  • In the literature, mycobacteriosis has been diagnosed in Japan, Australia, New Zealand and the UK, although the author has seen cases in practice in the US.
  • In two cases mycobacteriosis was not typed out in the Japan case, but reported as Mycobacterium genavense in two aged ferrets with conjunctival lesions in Australia.
  • Feral ferrets in New Zealand are seen as hosts and well as sentinels for Mycobacterium bovis infection.
  • M. avium complex (MAC) and M. triplex have also been isolated.
  • M. xenopi has been reported in a ferret in the UK, thought to be from contact with water from an affected aquarium.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Infection with Mycobacterium spp.
  • Transmission is likely both through inhalation and/or ingestion of the organisms from the environment or exposure to other infected animals.
  • There is the risk of ferret-ferret transmission.
  • In New Zealand they have also established ferret to other wildlife and livestock transmission:
    • Ferrets in NZ play a complex role in the TB cycle.
    • They are capable of contracting, amplifying and transmitting M. bovis infection.
    • The brush-tail possum (Trichosurus vulpecula) is the main host of the disease and ferrets are thought to contract the disease from feeding on tuberculous carcasses.

Diagnosis

Subscribe To View

This article is available to subscribers.

Try a free trial today or contact us for more information.

Treatment

Subscribe To View

This article is available to subscribers.

Try a free trial today or contact us for more information.

Prevention

Subscribe To View

This article is available to subscribers.

Try a free trial today or contact us for more information.

Outcomes

Subscribe To View

This article is available to subscribers.

Try a free trial today or contact us for more information.

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Davendralingam N et al (2017) Transmission of Mycobacterium xenopi to a pet albino ferret (Mustela putorius furo) from a domestic aquarium. Vet Rec 181 (7), 169 PubMed.
  • Byrom A E, Caley P, Paterson B M & Nugent G (2015) Feral ferrets (Mustela furo) as hosts and sentinels of tuberculosis in New Zealand. New Zealand Vet J 63 (sup 1), 42-53 PubMed.
  • Nakata M, Miwa Y, Tsuboi M & Uchida K (2014) Mycobacteriosis in a domestic ferret (Mustela putorius furo). J Vet Med Sci 76 (5), 705-709 PubMed.
  • Lucas J, Lucas A, Furber H et al (2000) Mycobacterium genavense infection in two aged ferrets with conjunctival lesions. Aust Vet J 78 (10), 685-689 PubMed.