Originally Published: 15 MAR 22 10:47 ET
By Marissa Sulek
NASHVILLE, Tennessee (WSMV) — Dog owners in the Germantown neighborhood say their dogs are getting sick and they don’t know why.
“At first I didn’t think anything of it because she’s a puppy and puppies get sick pretty easily,” says Erin, a Germantown resident.
She says recently, her 7-month-old Goldendoodle, Nike, started throwing up and having diarrhea. She wanted to know if other owners saw similar symptoms, so she took to Facebook and over 50 others chimed in.
Dr. Eva Evans with City Pets Animal Care says springtime is primetime for canine illnesses.
“We sometimes see multiple cases a day,” she says. “We see an increase in upper respiratory infections in dogs playing more at the dog park.”
One of the main infections her staff sees is called giardia.
“Typically, what you are going to see if your dog is infected with giardia is going to be diarrhea or loose stool,” Dr. Evans explains. “It’s not always watery, but you can also see a change when it goes from soft to normal, soft to normal.”
Dr. Evans says because so many people live in a small area like Germantown, that makes giardia even more contagious.
“Giardia is spread through feces,” Dr. Evans says. “So, if you have a dog that’s infected and we don’t clean up after it, another dog comes along and gets infected from that.”
Dr. Evans says wide-open dog parks are better than smaller ones at an apartment complex. While there’s medication to treat giardia, there’s no vaccine or prevention. That’s why Erin is keeping an eye out.
“I’m trying to be more cognizant of when we are walking, not having her pick up different sticks and mulch and just being cognizant of where she’s sniffing too to make sure it’s a safe area for her,” Erin comments.
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