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Two dogs with clinical signs of polyarthritis developed rheumatoid arthritis subsequent to Borrelia burgdorferi infection. In both dogs, the diagnosis of B burgdorferi infection was based on clinical signs of
disease and high serum B burgdorferi titer. After antibiotic administration, both dogs had decreased B burgdorferi titer, but clinical response was temporary or was lacking. The dogs subsequently were rheumatoid factor-positive (antinuclear antibody- and anti-globulin-negative) and responded to anti-inflammatory drug administration. Development of rheumatoid arthritis in both dogs after B burgdorferi infection implicates the Borrelia organism as an infective agent leading to the development of rheumatoid arthritis in dogs. Dogs with clinical signs suggestive of B burgdorferi infection should have antiglobulin, anti-nuclear antibody rheumatoid factor, and B burgdorferi tests performed to aid definitive diagnosis.