"G-Strep" is the short version of "Group G Streptococcal". "G-Strep" is part of the normal microbial flora of the gastrointestinal tract, vagina, and skin of cats. "Streptococci" are normally non-pathogenic, but a few species can cause significant morbidity and mortality ranging from death in young kittens, from pyometra, pneumonia and upper respiratory infection.
Beta-haemolytic streptococci belong to the Lancefield groups A, B, C or G classification.
Group A Streptococcal
Group B Streptococcal
Group C Streptococcal
Group G Streptococcal
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"Streptococci Infections" in adult cats have a high probability of show no symptoms! Unfortunately kittens have a weak immune system making them more subseptable to death may show symptoms prior to death. Many kittens will show no clinical symptoms of illness until hours before death. Usually not all of the kittens in the litter are affected. Kittens are typically infected with the bacteria from the queen's vagina during birth. This can result in an abscess of the umbilicus which spreads into the liver and abdominal cavity, leading to peritonitis and septicaemia. Some kittens may have an obvious umbilical abscess or swelling.
Unexplained spontaneous abortions or absorption.
Unexplained death of newborn kittens.
Birth abnormalities (Intestines on outside, cleft palette).
Affected kittens die between 1 and 10 days, rare cases of up to 6 weeks old.
No clinical symptoms of illness until hours before death.
Affected kittens show slower than average weight gain.
All the signs of Chlamydia but negative on testing.
Difficulty swallowing due to swelling.
G-strep requires specialized equipment to grow however other common bacteria can be detected through vaginal smear with sensitivity test. Many veterinarians are not aware of G-Strep and can mistake it as Upper Respiratory Infection, Chlamydia, Calicivirus or Panleukopenia.
Highly suggested to perform a feline upper respiratory PCR test and bacterial culture to rule out other possible ailments that present with the same symptoms such as Feline Mycoplasma.
Highly suggested to perform a vaginal culture with sensitivity test on a female if you suspect G-Strep. If the culture results in not definite answer, consider the treatment protocol listed below.
Cases have been documented can ecolli imbalance found through vaginal smear. This makes testing crucial to determine if breeders are treating for the wrong problem!
Consult with your veterinarian before any treatment.
Dehydration: Re-hydration is also important for restoring the body with fluid and flushing the system of the infection. Kittens will be unable to digest food if too dehydrated.
Weight-loss: All felines, especially kittens, in your household should be weighed immediately so you can determine weightloss.
Respiratory Distress: Cat(s) showing signs of respiratory distress of any level should be seen by the veterinarian immediately they may require intensive veterinary supportive care (Incubator with oxygen therapy, fluids and antibiotics).
DO NOT USE GENERIC BRAND MEDICATIONS
After clindamycin treatment, the G Strep will most likely still be retained in the normal flora at a very low level. Therefore, the cat could always be a potential G Strep carrier with respect to breeding only. In other words, we should be concerned with the breeding aspects of the Strep G rather than whether the cats do not have any G Strep at all, since the clindamycin will most likely not get every last bit of it - even at a 3 week dose. The other thing (which you may already know) is that a culture will take about 10 days, and will most likely come back with "normal flora", because the G Strep is at such a low level that it won't "register" on the lab tests.
Beta-haemolytic Streptococci are usually resistant to sulfamethoxazole, tetracycline and gentamicin. Resistance to penicillins or cephalosporins is very rarely detected.
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