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Veterinarian's Warning: Keep An Eye Out For 'Canine Upper Respiratory Infectious Disease'

While most pups will be fine - vets say it only takes one unvaccinated dog around yours to start a spread of disease.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — We're approaching the most wonderful time of the year, but this winter could really take a toll on your pets. Triad veterinarians are warning dog owners about Canine Upper Respiratory Infectious Disease, and how easily it can spread - if you don't have the proper safeguards in place.

Dr. Janine Oliver with Benessere Animal Hospital says the disease encompasses a lot of things, and there's more than one way a dog can get an infection. 

"An animal with a normal immune system is not likely to get it if they are properly vaccinated and they’re not stressed and out in the elements," she said. 

However, dogs with compromised immune systems, in stressful situations, or who don't have up-to-date vaccinations, could catch the infection if they're near other dogs who have it. 

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Some of the symptoms include coughing or gagging, not eating, a runny nose and watery eyes, fever, and sluggishness. Dr. Oliver says signs could be subtle at first. 

"When they [get sick], they are designed to pretend like I'm fine, I'm fine! Nothing's wrong here!" she said, "If you're coming home to them and it's not how they normally greet you, that's a red flag."

Recently, she says she's only dealt with two cases this upper respiratory infection. Other veterinarians tell WFMY News 2 they haven't encountered any cases. 

But, they say, it's good to make sure your pet's vaccines are up to date- before coming into contact with other animals.

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