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AM News Brief: Canine distemper, beer prices & low-to-no snow in as little as 35 years

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Courtesy of the Humane Society of Utah
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Canine distemper cases appear to be increasing along the Wasatch Front. It is a highly contagious virus that affects dogs and wildlife, and puppies and unvaccinated dogs are particularly vulnerable. This story and more in Thursday morning's news brief.

Thursday morning, Dec. 2, 2021

State

State looks to improve teacher retention

Teacher retention rates in Utah appear concerningly low. Only 42% of teachers stay past their first five years, while just over half stay beyond that. While those numbers are better than most other states’, Jennifer Throndsen with the state board of education said boosting them has become a priority. She said the state is working on several initiatives to provide better mentoring to early-career teachers and more learning coaches, as lack of support is often cited as one of the main reasons people leave the job. Read the full story. — Jon Reed

Northern Utah

Canine distemper on the rise

Canine distemper cases appear to be increasing along the Wasatch Front. It is a highly contagious virus that affects dogs and wildlife, and puppies and unvaccinated dogs are particularly vulnerable. The Humane Society of Utah said over the last couple of months more sick dogs have been surrendered to them than in the past. The group is encouraging everyone to get their animals vaccinated — especially as families adopt new puppies during the holiday season. — Elaine Clark

Local breweries hit with new costs

New rules from a national aluminum can distributor are going to have an impact on local breweries. FOX-13 reported the Ball Corporation has increased its minimum purchase for printed cans. It was one truckload for each print run, but now they require an order of at least five truckloads. That’s around one million cans. Owners of local breweries said they’ll have to find new ways to label their cans or use more glass. They also predict a cost increase on beer this coming spring. — Brian Schnee, FOX-13. This article is published through the Utah News Collaborative, a partnership of news organizations in Utah that aims to inform readers across the state.

Southern Utah

More park visitors means more vandalism

Visitation was so high at Arches National Park last week, officials had to close the gates on five days, and the Balanced Rock Trail was vandalized with dozens of graffiti markings. Those included scratches, initials, names and the year 2021. Spokesperson Kait Thomas told KZMU in Moab that Arches has a team of rangers dedicated to cleaning up graffiti, and they acted quickly to remove it. She said it’s important to keep the park pristine for future generations. — Ashley Bunton, KZMU

Region/Nation

Bleak prediction for snow in the West

Climate scientists are sounding the alarm about a future with little snow. That would cause significant problems for the Mountain West's water supplies. A new study from the Western Regional Climate Center in Reno found that if human-caused climate change continues at its current rate, the Western U.S. will consistently see low-to-no snow within the next 35-60 years. — Robyn Vincent, Mountain West News Bureau

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