A new and deadly dog virus is showing up in Michigan.
The virus has already killed six dogs in the Ann Arbor area, and veterinarians say that it may be spreading from owners to their pets.
Veterinarians don’t have a name for the virus yet; it is the first time that the virus has been seen in Michigan. Vets say that dogs with the virus show flu-like symptoms within 12 to 24 hours of being infected. They typically have severe abdominal pain, vomiting, lethargy, and bloody diarrhea. Vets recommend that if a dog begins showing symptoms, that they be seen in a vet’s office right away.
The virus shows similarity to the Circovirus that sickened dogs in parts of Ohio, and San Diego last year.
No one knows how the disease is transmitted, but dogs with the virus appear to have owners who are also sick. The owners of the affected dogs were also ill, with flu-like symptoms. Doctors recommend that people wash their hands and use hand sanitizer frequently to avoid spreading germs.
No humans have died from this virus, and doctors don’t believe that humans will be seriously affected by it. Nobody knows if the virus can spread to other pets, so far it has only been seen in dogs.