Respiratory Disease in Dogs

You may have recently heard about the “Mystery Dog Illness” via news outlets or social media. Although this illness first appeared in 2022, there are now multiple states reporting cases. As of today (11/20/2023), there have not been any reported cases of this new disease in Michigan.

As of now, our recommendation is to minimize your dog’s exposure to other dogs. If that is not possible, ensure your dog is up to date on their vaccinations and seek veterinary care as soon as possible if you notice symptoms of respiratory disease (sneezing, coughing, lethargy).

Other points to consider:

  • Dr. Kurt Williams, director of the Oregon Veterinary Diagnostics Lab, has said it’s not time for dog owners to “become paralyzed with fear”, but he thinks “concern is fine”.
  • There are 3 ways the disease has been seen to progress
    • A mild to moderate cough for 6-8+ weeks.
    • Chronic pneumonia
    • Severe pneumonia; which can have a poor outcome within 24-36 hours of diagnosis.
  • The disease is thought to be viral.
  • There are many potential respiratory diseases that dogs can have, the most common being canine infectious respiratory complex (AKA: Kennel Cough, Upper Respiratory Infection, or Infectious Tracheobronchitis) and Canine Influenza. *There are vaccinations available for some of these respiratory illnesses.*

If you have any questions about your pet’s vaccine status or if they develop any symptoms, call us!