A ‘Mysterious’ Illness is Affecting Dogs in California. Here’s What Pet Owners Should Know.

Veterinarians are warning the public about a new respiratory illness affecting dogs in the United States. The illness has been reported in multiple states, including California. One hotspot is L.A. County's San Fernando Valley — a fact this writer learned firsthand. Thankfully, our pup has recovered. 

Experts don’t know where the illness originated or how exactly it’s being spread. The telltale sign is a persistent cough. Symptoms can also include sneezing, lethargy or runny eyes. Most dogs recover within a couple of weeks. But some, especially older dogs and those with pre-existing conditions, have developed pneumonia. In rare cases, animals have died.

“It seems to happen very, very quickly — to go from this cough that just won’t go away ... and then all of a sudden they develop this pneumonia," veterinarian Lindsey Ganzer told NBC’s “Today” show.

As a precaution, veterinarians are advising pet owners to avoid dog parks and boarding facilities if possible. If your dog develops a cough or other respiratory symptoms, do not delay in seeking treatment, particularly if your dog has any chronic conditions or is of advanced age.

Update: L.A. County has confirmed it is investigating a possible outbreak 


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