News of a mysterious illness circulating among dogs in the state has pet owners on alert. In the last four weeks, Burlington Emergency & Veterinary Specialists say they have seen 21 cases of moderate to severe respiratory infections and that current vaccines aren’t preventing the disease. In two cases, dogs have died. “A lot of times we will see like kennel cough go around. It will be dogs that get boarded or go to the dog park. But I am seeing this in dogs that stay home and don’t go anywhere. This thing is pretty contagious,” said Dr. Erin Forbes of the Mountain View Animal Hospital. Forbes says she has been getting calls from pet owners about the illness as often as twice a day. The dogs show symptoms like sneezing, eye discharge, foamy saliva, lack of appetite, fever and a cough. Veterinarians say they don’t know what the illness is or where it came from but it is contagious. “Something very similar happened in New Hampshire last fall,” Forbes said. “It went away pretty quickly from what I understand. It was there, and all of a sudden it was gone. So that’s kind of what we are hoping here.” Forbes says she has been able to treat dogs with antibiotics and after a few days, they are feeling better. Forbes says if you are worried about your dog’s health or hear of any dogs getting sick at day care, it may be best to keep your pup at home.
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