RALEIGH (WTVD) -- A Raleigh vet is issuing a warning for dog owners in the Triangle: Avoid dog parks in the coming weeks.
Dr. Page Wages is urging you not to take your dog to a dog park for the next two weeks after a spike in cases of kennel cough.
"The dogs have this deep, honking cough," Wages says.
She's seen 39 cases in the last couple of weeks at Care First Animal Hospital on Oberlin Road.
"We've seen a tremendous rise in cases," Wages says, "almost every one of them is a dog that frequents a dog park or plays with neighborhood dogs."
Don't worry, it's not COVID-19, but like the coronavirus, kennel cough can spread easily.
Wages suggest dog owners practice social distancing for their dogs. "It's doggie social distancing. Six feet is the actual rule, so it's the same in the dog world as it is in for us for coronavirus. Any dog that is infected can spread it up to six feet."
Dogs vaccinated for kennel cough can still get it but the cases are not as severe. The good news is kennel cough is treatable with antibiotics and oral steroids.
Dr. Wages hopes if people avoid dog parks for the next couple of weeks it will go away and dogs and their owners can get back to regular play.
In August, a North Carolina dog died after demonstrating signs of respiratory distress. The dog later tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 in humans.