Mysterious illness spreading nationwide among dogs

A new warning for pet owners has been issued after a mystery illness that affects dogs is spreading across the country.

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It is an unknown respiratory illness that is affecting dogs, according to WABC.

The illness is very contagious and can be deadly, veterinarians say. According to the news station, the most reported symptoms are similar to kennel cough, which includes coughing, sneezing, nasal and/or eye discharges, and lethargy.

It was reported first in Oregon in August, WABC reported. Oregon’s Department of Agriculture received over a hundred reports from vets regarding the illness.

Kevin Snekvik, the Executive Director of the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Lab said, that dog owners need to be aware of the symptoms and keep a close eye on their pets, according to KIRO.

“Your dog will run a fever and they won’t feel good, they’ll become lethargic -- meaning they want to lie around more when normally they’d be wanting to play outside. And like you mentioned, the coughing part of it, if that becomes more productive, more of a wet cough, like a hacking cough,” Sekvik said.

If your dog has any of those symptoms, Sekvik says to take them to the vet so they can get a sampling which will be sent off to a state lab to be tested, according to the news outlet.

“What we’re seeing is respiratory disease, so again the coughing, dogs not feeling well, and presenting as kind of a kennel cough,” he said.

Sekvik also recommends pet owners avoid dog parks or letting their pets hang out with dogs they don’t know, KIRO reported. He also suggests avoiding boarding your pets this holiday season if you can.

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