Dog owners demand answers after mysterious disease strikes pets in Miami Beach

MIAMI BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Dog owners are demanding answers after some canines contracted a mysterious disease in Miami Beach.

Kaia is a healthy girl now, but a few weeks ago, she got really sick.

“All of a sudden, the dog looked lethargic and was not acting right,” dog owner Mary Beth Mazzotta said. “We rushed her to the veterinarian.”

Mazzotta said she was shocked to learn that her daughter’s dog wasn’t the only canine in peril. She said several dogs had recently shown up sick at her vet’s office with no explanation. Two of them did not survive.

“We want to know what the city is going to do about it,” Mazzotta said.

Mazzotta is not the only one concerned.

“I just want to see the city get more involved and identify what it is that is causing these illnesses,” dog owner Michael Atisha said.

The city was aware of the issue, as they alerted residents on social media last week about reports of a dog disease affecting dogs walking along the West Avenue Baywalk.

However, in an email Friday, a city spokesperson explained the Department of Health and Miami-Dade Animal Services looked into it, but nothing related to the mysterious dog disease turned up.

“The poison control databases did not have any hits for this area, and they have not received any information related to sick dogs,” a City of Miami Beach spokesperson said in a statement.

Even so, condo complexes have posted warnings, giving dog owners a heads up about the potential danger.

“Is it something in the environment?” Mazzotta asked “Is it something that maybe the workers are doing? What is it?”

With no explanation for now, dog owners are asking their neighbors to keep a close eye on their pets, and if a furry friend shows any signs of sickness, get help as soon as possible.

“Our dogs are our loved ones,” Mazzotta said. “They’re part of our family. It’s the same as a child playing on a playground. We need to make the environment safe for everybody.”

Dog owners are also reminded that cleaning up after their pets will help prevent the spread of disease and is also the law.

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