As many families prepare to board their pets during their holiday travels, a mystery canine respiratory illness that's highly contagious and resistant to antibiotics has been reported in multiple states, including Georgia.

"We still don't know what it's coming from, whether it's a bacteria or a virus, although some people have got some suspicions," Dr. Jim Hammon, veterinarian at Northgate Animal Hospital in Chattanooga, said by phone.

As of Friday, Hammon had not seen any cases of the illness, which some are calling atypical canine infectious respiratory disease, in his practice and was not aware of any confirmed cases in Tennessee.

But since no diagnostic test or centralized reporting system for the illness exists, confirming cases is difficult and it's hard to know the extent of the outbreak.


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