Dog Owner Shares Story of Loss From Mystery Virus Going Around In the Tampa Area

The loss of a pet hits hard. But one Tampa area dog owner who lost a German Shepherd this week is warning fellow pet lovers of a virus that's here in the Tampa area. The problem certainly isn't isolated to Florida. In fact, USA Today wrote about the sickness recently. Dogs in 16 states have contracted the respiratory illness, according to the article. They say it's highly contagious and that it's similar to kennel cough. The big difference is the symptoms don't go away. Treatments don't seem to work. The pet owner from the Tampa area, "ICYaLata" on reddit, says their dog started showing signs of a cold Friday. The dog didn't eat anything that night. By Sunday, the German Shepherd started having breathing problems and wouldn't lay down. That's when they decided to get some professional help. The ER team worked hard and tried a variety of medications and provided oxygen. But that afternoon, the dog died. How did the dog get the virus? The owner shared his story to encourage pet owners to do what they can to protect their dogs. It doesn't seem to get passed on to cats and humans aren't at risk. The dog's owners think the virus might have been acquired at daycare. But they don't know for sure. They say the dog hadn't been taken to a dog park in a few weeks. How to Protect Your Dogs: 2 Tips If you plan to travel over the holidays, many are suggesting you ask for friends or neighbors to watch over your dog instead of taking it to a pet hotel. The American Veterinary Medical Association says one important thing owners can do is make sure their pets' vaccines are updated. Also wash your hands after handling yours or other dogs. [select-listicle listicle_id="402275" syndication_name="the-7-best-dog-friendly-restaurants-in-the-tampa-bay-area" description="no"]

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