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Can dogs get STDs? & Other common FAQs

The information provided herein does not constitute an expert or medical advice, nor intended to replace such advice.

Sexual Health

 Can dogs get an STD? It might surprise you to know that sadly our furry friends may also be susceptible to getting a sexually transmitted disease. 

Can dogs get an STD?

Dogs may contract a variety of common sexually transmitted diseases including herpes. 

Cross-breeding populations is the most common cause of sexually transmitted diseases in dogs. If your dog is showcasing symptoms of a sexually transmitted disease, you should bring them to the vet as soon as possible, as this could lead to further health complications for your furry friend. 

You may not be able to easily tell if your dog has an STD, however it may come down to circumstances, if your dog has been involved with breeding, it could be an idea to get them checked out by a vet regardless to make sure that they are in good health. 

What types of STDs can a dog get?

  • Canine brucellosis (a highly contagious bacterial infection caused by  Brucella canis (B. canis))
  • Canine herpes (a highly contagious viral infection caused by canine herpesvirus)

What are the symptoms of STDs in dogs?

Some of the most common symptoms of STDs in dogs include: 

  • Bleeding 
  • Discharge 
  • Open sores around the hindquarters 
  • Wounds on or around the hindquarters 
  • Swollen or inflamed genitalia 

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One of the tell-tale signs that your dog has an STD is the way in which they are walking or their gait. If your dog is walking funny, whining, or you notice any bleeding or discharge, bring them to the vet immediately to get them better checked out. 

Your vet will complete a sample collection and be able to provide better insight into what is happening, as well as being able to offer a course of treatment. 

What is the treatment for STDs in dogs?

The most common treatment for STDs in dogs is anti-biotic or anti-viral medication. Both of which will eliminate the source of the issue that is responsible for the condition. 

Anti-viral or anti-biotic medication most commonly comes in tablet form. The best way to administer treatment is to crush the tablets up into your dog’s food.  

During the treatment period, it is super important to separate your dogs from other dogs to ensure that there is no further transmission, and essentially to ensure that you dog has no sexual contact with other dogs.

The treatment period may take 4-6 weeks depending on the severity of symptoms and the type of sexually transmitted disease that your dog is carrying. Unfortunately there are some STDs that are not totally curable, such as herpes. The vet may perform additional testing following treatment to ensure that the infection has fully cleared.

The vet may also complete an overall screening to ensure that there is no organ damage due to the effects of the disease.  


Hannah Kingston

Hannah Kingston

Oct 23, 2022

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