As a dog owner of two little muppets, this is serious, scary, and deadly.

According to a KSLTV article, "veterinary laboratories in several states are investigating an unusual respiratory illness in dogs, and encouraging people to take basic precautions to keep their pets healthy as veterinarians try to pin down what’s making the animals sick."

The "outbreak" of this respiratory illness is currently in three states: Oregon, Colorado, and New Hampshire. Research is being done right now in the Granite State.

The illness is caused by lasting respiratory disease and pneumonia, but does not respond to antibiotics. This is the scariest part, and dogs are dying from it.

According to KSLTV, research is being conducted at the University of New Hampshire to combat this scary illness for our four-legged friends.

David Needle, senior veterinary pathologist at the University of New Hampshire’s New Hampshire Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, has been investigating the mysterious disease for almost a year.

His lab and colleagues at the university’s Hubbard Center for Genome Research have looked at samples from dogs in Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Massachusetts and more will be coming from Oregon, Colorado and possibly other states.

Needle is from UNH, and has seen a large increase in deaths from this illness. He recommends owners in New England “decrease contact with other dogs.”

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Owners, keep an eye out for symptoms. These include coughing, sneezing, nasal or eye discharge, and lethargy, according to KSLTV. Some cases of this pneumonia progress quickly, making dogs very sick within 24 to 36 hours.

Currently, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Services Laboratory is working to find out what is causing the illnesses. However, no apparent answer is clear.

To my doggy owners in New England, watch your dogs. Watch them for symptoms, and watch their contact with other dogs.

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