I have been discussing the latest outbreak of canine respiratory disease with my clients, family, friends, and neighbors. It’s surprising to hear that many pet parents do not know about this illness that has been fatal in some cases. From what I have read, this new respiratory disease is not responding to the antibiotics routinely given. Is it a bacterial infection or a virus?

Veterinarians are reporting an increase in cases of canine respiratory disease that does not respond to regular treatment protocols. Affected dogs are experiencing more severe symptoms for a longer time than would be expected for routine canine infectious respiratory disease.

Symptoms to look for are coughing, sneezing, lethargy, lack of appetite, difficulty breathing, runny nose, or discharge from the eyes.

Similar to Kennel Cough, this respiratory disease is highly contagious! It is easily spread through direct contact between your dog and an infected dog, via discharge droplets from coughing or sneezing. It can also be spread through contaminated objects like toys, dishes, and such. Like Kennel Cough, humans will not contract the respiratory illness but can carry the canine respiratory disease on their skin, clothing, and shoes and transmit it to another dog. Consider any shared object or surface (fomite) in contact with an infected dog, to be a threat of contagion to a healthy dog.

It is highly recommended by veterinarians as well as Veterinary Schools and research departments to avoid boarding kennels, dog parks, and doggy daycare facilities. Caution should be taken if you need to have your dog groomed or when taking your dog to a pet store.

Make sure your dogs are up to date on vaccines and talk to your veterinarian about the best protocol for your dog.

Because of the uncertainty of this respiratory illness and how easily it can be transmitted, I do not allow anyone to pet my dogs or the dogs of my clients when we are in a public place. Taking a little extra precaution may save your dog from contracting an infectious disease. If someone pets an infected dog and then in turn pets your dog or your dog licks their hand, there is a strong possibility of transferring the infection to your dog.

If you suspect that your dog may be showing symptoms of illness, please contact your veterinarian immediately.

This article is not for medical advice to for awareness. Please speak to your veterinarian if you have questions or concerns.

Leave a Reply