Respiratory Diseases in Prairie Dogs

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Infectious and Non-Infectious Respiratory Diseases in Prairie Dogs

Respiratory disease in prairie dogs may be due to infections such as pneu­monia or non-infectious causes such as a dusty or humid environ­ment. Diet and environmental conditions are also thought to affect a prairie dog’s respiratory system. Regardless of whether the respiratory disease is of an infectious or non-infectious nature, your prairie dog needs proper veterinary care. Follow your veterinarian's dosage instructions and treatment program to help your pet recover quickly.


  • Fever
  • Depression
  • Lethargy
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Sneezing
  • Nasal discharge
  • Discharge of the eyes
  • Loss of appetite
  • Weight loss



  • Bacterial and viral infections


  • Obesity
  • Blockage of the airways and inhalation of foreign bodies
  • Dusty and humid living conditions


Your veterinarian can typically diag­nose pneumonia just by examining your prairie dog. If fluid is discharging from the animal’s eyes or nose, laboratory tests can be performed to identify the causative organism; tests can also be run on blood samples. In addition, X-rays are an excellent tool for veterinarians to observe the condition of the prairie dog’s lungs and identify respiratory diseases such as pneumonia.

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