A recent increase in the number of Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex cases across South Florida has one county warning dog owners to be on the lookout.
Miami-Dade Animal Services is urging owners to help protect their pets from the spread of the virus by keeping dogs on current vaccine routines, avoiding dog parks or other areas with multiple dogs, and with visits to their veterinarian.
MDAS is also suspending spay and neuter surgeries along with vaccinations and microchipping at its Wellness Clinic, owner surrender and offsite pet adoption events.
CIRDC is highly contagious and can pose a serious health risk to dogs. The disease can spread rapidly among dogs that are housed together or those in close proximity to each other such as in kennels, dog parks or grooming facilities.
CIRDC is spread by direct contact with an infected dog and by contact with people who have been exposed to the virus. The virus can be carried on people’s clothing, hands, and on items such as food and water bowls, collars, leashes, toys, and bedding.
Coughing dogs produce virus-containing mists that can travel 20 feet or more. Symptoms include coughing, sneezing, and discharge from the nose and/or eyes.
If you think your dog is showing signs of CIRDC, contact your vet immediately. The virus is easily killed by most disinfectants, handwashing with soap, washing clothes and bedding, along with washing food bowls and toys.
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