Veterinarians warning pet owners about upper respiratory infection affecting dogs

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Veterinarians are warning pet owners about an upper respiratory infection affecting dogs.

Leesville Animal Hospital in Raleigh, N.C., sent an email to clients alerting them of the infection that's causing dogs to develop a cough.

During the last two weeks, Dr. Harold Pearce has seen about 17 pets showing mild symptoms of the infection, some who've been at Leesville's boarding facility and day camp and some who picked it up elsewhere.

Pearce said symptoms have shown up in both well-vaccinated dogs and those who weren't up-to-date on vaccines.

Veterinarians don't know what's causing the infection and if it's bacterial or viral.

Pearce hasn't seen any serious complications or death, but Leesville Animal Hospital is working to contain the spread by treating sick dogs with antibiotics and cough suppressants before immediately sending them home.

He said pet owners should know that boarding, grooming and socializing at dog parks or daycares are at-risk situations.

"We've had them coming from dog parks, other day camps, other boarding facilities, some in our facilities," Pearce said. "And it's fairly widespread. So I suspect whatever it is, we still have a fairly native canine population that's very susceptible to this."

Pearce has sent samples to a lab for testing and is hoping results will hold the answer as to what's causing the infection.

If your dog is showing symptoms of a cough, Pearce suggests calling your veterinarian right away.
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