Babesia gibsoni

May 2014 by Sarah Kirk, DVM

Audience: Veterinary Team

Video Length: 64 minutes

Babesia gibsoni is an intracellular parasite of red blood cells.  This presentation, given by Dr. Sarah Kirk at the University of Florida's 7th Annual Maddie’s® Shelter Medicine Conference, provides a case study in the diagnosis and management of B. gibsoni in pit bulls rescued from large-scale fighting rings.  As a shelter veterinarian, you may encounter Babesia in your canine population; how should you respond?

Learning objectives:

  • Identify which dogs should be suspected of harboring, and therefore be tested for, B. gibsoni.
  • Learn about the treatment protocol used in the ASPCA emergency shelters, its "success rate” and side effects.
  • Learn how infected dogs should be handled with regard to co-housing, play groups and adoption into a household with resident dogs.
  • Learn about treatment "failures” and possible next steps for these patients.

After viewing the presentation, click here to take the quiz and receive a Certificate of Attendance!

Dr. Sarah Kirk

Dr. Kirk received her DVM from Michigan State University in 1977 and completed her Certificate in Shelter Medicine from UF in 2013. Her career has been spent in private practice, research, and her passion, shelter medicine. After "retiring” to Florida in 2008, she became involved as a volunteer with the Shelter Medicine Department at UF, participating in Operation Catnip, shelter consultations and disaster response. Following her work as a consultant with the ASPCA on the Caboodle Ranch case, she was hired by the ASPCA in November of 2012. As the Field Investigations and Response (FIR) Team Medical Director, she is responsible for the protocols used to provide consistency of response for emergency sheltering.


Content you may be interested in

Use social media to get more foster homes for big dogs

February 15, 2017

Can you save 44 large dogs’ lives in 14 days through the power of social media? Austin Pets Alive! (APA!) did just that, and in this recording from the 2015 Best Friends National Conference, Faith Wright tells you how you can, too! In Foster Faster: Growing Your Dog Foster Program, Wright says the trick is… Learn More

Adopted pets are rescued by love, saved by shelter medicine

February 9, 2017

If you’ve adopted a pet from an animal shelter or rescue group, you know how powerful the bond is that exists between the pet and their human family. You’re also probably aware of the efforts made by shelter and rescue staff and volunteers to make sure you and your pet found each other. What you… Learn More

Advances in pet databases can help your shelter or rescue group get more pets adopted

February 8, 2017

The technological revolution of the last 25 years has had a profound impact on the animal welfare industry. Things we now take for granted, like websites that display our organizations' services and adoptable pets, pet-search databases such as and, more robust and easy to use animal sheltering software solutions, and the rise of… Learn More