Disease spreading as humans are taking their canines out to socialize in a post-pandemic world.
Just as the pandemic panic related to covid is winding down for humans, warnings are going out in Southern Florida about a highly contagious dog virus.
Miami-Dade County Animal Services has issued a warning for dog owners about taking your pet out in public, as a highly contagious virus is spreading throughout South Florida, and it could put your dog in danger.
When the sun is out in South Florida so are the dogs.
But now, Miami-Dade County Animal Services is warning pet owners to be cautious of a disease that can be dangerous to dogs.
“Basically, I’m trying just to be careful,” said dog owner Susanna Fernandez. “Not letting them drink from the fountain.”
The disease is Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC), which is sometimes called dog flu, canine flu, or kennel cough. It is reappearing….because humans are back to taking their dogs out to socialize in this post-pandemic world.
Its symptoms include congestion, coughing and a runny nose. Some dogs will also develop kennel cough. Health officials are seeing more cases of CIRDC in dogs from pet stores and shelters, and vets say they are seeing this disease spreading quickly at dog day cares and dog parks.
One veterinarian says a disease like CIRDC is actually expected, especially because so many people bought dogs during the pandemic and are now bringing them out more. The best way to keep your canine companion from getting sick is to avoid gathering with other dogs, keep them up-to-date with their vaccines and make sure you’re taking them to the vet regularly.
One dog owner, though, says he’s not going to keep his dog sheltered because of it.
“Absolutely nobody would like their pets getting sick and dealing with the thoughts of that afterward, but I think if people are watching the dog, picking up after them, just promoting clean atmosphere, I think an outdoor park like this, even though you have that small concern… it’s a benefit for the pets to get out,” said Fort Myers resident Ronald Young.
Dogs of any breed can get CIRDC. Many pathogens cause it, and there are no current vaccines to prevent infection.
Common viral causes of CIRDC include canine adenovirus 2, canine distemper virus, canine influenza viruses, canine herpesvirus, and canine
Common bacterial causes of CIRDC includeBordetella bronchiseptica, Streptococcus equi subspecies zooepidemicus, and Mycoplasma spp.
Veterinarians most commonly diagnose CIRDC after a dog’s owner notes a sudden onset of coughing, sneezing, or discharge from the nose and/or eyes. Disease may be diagnosed after multiple dogs have a sudden onset of these signs shortly after being together in a common area (e.g. outbreak).
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