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The US is Seeing a Rapid Rise in Respiratory Disease in Dogs

There has been a surge in canine Respiratory Disease in Dogs, particularly affecting North America and Canada.

Credit: Shutterstock/ alexei_tm

There has been a surge in canine respiratory infections, particularly affecting North America and Canada.

Dog owners are questioning the precautions they should take to protect their dogs.

What is the Mystery Illness Affecting Dogs?

The unidentified mystery illness is affecting sick dogs. With experts unable to pinpoint a specific cause, anxieties have arisen surrounding a potential new pathogen that may infect dogs. Researchers in New Hampshire are also exploring the possibility of a recently identified bacterium

What are the Symptoms of the Infection?

Dogs contracting the infection show symptoms such as fever, coughing, weight loss and lethargy. The infection is labeled the ‘Atypical Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex.’

According to ‘The Today Show,’

“The illness itself usually starts out as a cough, which can last for weeks to months and does not respond to typical treatment, such as antibiotics or antivirals. In some dogs, the cough progresses to pneumonia, and in some cases, the pneumonia can turn fatal if the dog ends up struggling to get enough oxygen.”

Maura Hohman

Advice for Dog Owners

Health officials have advised pet owners to monitor their dog’s cough or similar symptoms. Remaining vigilant about potential symptoms and avoiding taking dogs out of groomers, boarding, and day-care if they begin to show signs of infection.


If you have a dog, watch this video from our Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr. Kwane Stewart on what you can do and or avoid as we continue to learn about this mystery disease. Keep your pets safe 🫶 #vetmed #veterinarian #veteducation #upperrespitoryinfection #dogdisease #dogdiseaseprevention @Dr. Kwane Stewart

♬ original sound – HolistaPet

The Risks of Infection

According to the Oregon Department of Agriculture, there are three potential outcomes of the infection

  1. Mild to moderate cough that has persisted for at least 6 to 8 weeks and is not improving with antibiotic usage
  2. Recurrent pneumonia that is resistant to antibiotics and other treatments
  3. Severe pneumonia with serious outcomes in less than 48 hours

There have been more than 200 cases of the mysterious illness since August with several dogs passing away.

However, if owners remain vigilant and decrease their dog’s contact time with other dogs, officials have told owners to remain calm.

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Hello! My name is Rachel, I'm from Manchester and I'm a Journalism student at Cardiff University! I love writing anything related to popular culture and entertainment.

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