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Florida kennel cough outbreak explained


  • South Florida is experiencing an outbreak of the Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex, or “kennel cough.”
  • Most cases are mild, but more severe symptoms can develop into pneumonia.
  • Health experts say keeping your dog’s vaccines up to date is the best protection.

With COVID-19 still on the minds of many Americans, there is another virus spreading around south Florida affecting a different segment of the population: dogs.

Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex, also known as “kennel cough” or “canine cough,” is caused by a group of viruses and bacteria, including influenza, that affect the respiratory tract of dogs. It can also be easily spread, whether dogs live in the home or are awaiting adoption.

Although the recent outbreak is limited to South Florida, the disease can be found across the country at any given time, according to José Arce, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association. José Arce, president of the American Veterinary Association.

“We’re going to see a case here and there, but then there’s going to be outbreaks in different parts of the country at different times,” Arce told USA TODAY. .

Here’s everything you need to know about CIRDC:

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How is CIRDC spread?

Similar to how COVID-19 spreads, CIRDC spreads easily whenever dogs are in close contact, whether it’s at a dog park, a fun date, grooming, events for dogs and with dogs in common places such as shelters. Arce said another way the virus can spread is if one dog plays with a toy and another dog then uses the same toy.





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