November 27, 2023

Mysterious Canine Respiratory Disease

There is a mysterious canine respiratory disease that is spreading around the United States. Respiratory panels for commonly seen bacteria and viruses have been negative so far. Scientists are working hard to try to figure out the cause. They aren’t sure if it’s an old strain of influenza or another pathogen, or something new.

The AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) has reported 3 typical outcomes with this mysterious illness.

  • Chronic tracheal irritation/bronchitis that can last anywhere from 6-8 weeks. This is not very responsive to antibiotics.
  • Chronic pneumonia that is not very responsive to antibiotics
  • A small subset can develop acute pneumonia that becomes severe quickly. It can lead to poor outcomes in as little as 24-36 hours. This is also not very responsive to antibiotics.

There unfortunately are not set guidelines for this mysterious canine respiratory disease at the time.

A key take away from this is to keep your pet fully vaccinated.

We have often said “kennel cough” as a one size fits all in the past. It is officially called canine respiratory disease complex. This basically means that there are numerous viruses and bacteria that can cause “kennel cough” or respiratory disease in dogs.

The veterinarians at Gulf Breeze Animal Hospital and the AVMA recommend staying up to date on vaccines to prevent comorbidities. Influenza, Bordetella and DA2PPV are important vaccines to prevent certain respiratory illnesses. We are writing this blog to spread awareness, but hopefully to not spread fear among our clients.

Be sure to check out our other blog about important vaccines for your dog. Another great resource is the AVMA website. Please give Gulf Breeze Animal Hospital a call to schedule for vaccines or if you have a pet that is coughing. We will be glad to schedule an appointment, examine your pet and discuss this further with you.

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