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By Megha Satyanarayana for

Macomb County, Michigan — Last week, Heather Goff, 23, watched her 2-year-old golden retriever, G, abandon her playful personality, become lethargic and die.

The St. Clair Shores woman said that despite veterinary care, including blood transfusions, G’s decline was rapid and shocking.

“She was the happiest, most healthiest dog ever,” she said.

G died of leptospirosis, a rare bacterial infection that some Macomb County veterinarians said they think is on the rise. Multiple cases have been confirmed in Warren and St. Clair Shores this summer; normally, there are just a few per year.

The main culprits are rat urine and standing water, said Dr. Courtney Farr of the Parkview Animal Hospital in Warren, who did not treat G.

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