Information About Canine Flu

Q: What is “dog flu?”

A: Canine influenza, or dog flu, is a respiratory infection that is contagious to dogs. There are 2 types of dog flu viruses: H3N8 and H3N2.

Q: Are there any cases near me?

A: There have been outbreaks reported in the Chicago and Atlanta metropolitan areas in the first half of 2015. There have not been any cases reported in southwest Missouri.

Q: How can you tell if a dog has the flu?

A: The best way to tell with any disease is a change in behavior. Not all dogs will show signs of illness, but the most common signs are a hacking cough and green discharge from the eyes or nose. Left undiagnosed, these symptoms can develop into serious conditions, such as pneumonia.

Q: How is canine flu transmitted?

A: The flu can spread through coughing and sneezing and contact with contaminated areas – much like the human flu. The best thing to do is avoid exposing your dog to those who might be sick. Equipment, clothing, bedding, and other surfaces need to be disinfected after exposure to dogs showing signs of sickness.

Q: I haven’t heard of canine flu before. How prevalent is it?

A: The H3N8 strain has been considered a “dog-specific” virus since 2005. The H3N2 canine strain was first diagnosed in the United States in 2015.

Q: Can humans contract the disease?

A: No human infections of canine flu have been reported.

Q: Where can I find more information?

A: Give us a call at Central Pet Clinic or visit the websites below.


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