Daniela Bedenice, DVM, DACVIM, DACVECC
Bacterial infections requiring extended antimicrobial therapy (such as pneumonia, peritonitis, sepsis, uterine and dental infection) are a significant cause of morbidity and mortality in camelids.
Respiratory distress is generally defined as outwardly evident, labored respiratory efforts or ventilation i.e. the clinically apparent inability to adequately ventilate and/or oxygenate.
South American Camelids (SAC) have gained significant popularity as pets, show, pack (llamas) and fiber animals in the United States, which has resulted in an increasing demand for intensive care management of critically ill neonatal crias over the past 10 years.
The accepted working definition of sepsis in humans is based on a 2010 Consensus Conference statement on sepsis and organ failure, which identified sepsis as a systemic inflammatory response (SIRS) associated with suspected or proven infection (fungal, bacterial, viral or rickettsial).
A variety of primary lung diseases have been reported in llamas and alpacas in the peer-reviewed literature, although pulmonary dysfunction may be underestimated, due to subtle presenting signs and lack of routine functional analysis of the respiratory track in this species.