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Canine Influenza Information

September 2, 2013

By now, we are sure you have heard some things about canine influenza. We are taking this time to provide you with some accurate information to help you better protect your beloved pet.

What is canine influenza?
Just like the human "flu", canine influenza is highly contagious. Virtually every dog exposed to the virus will be infected. This is because the virus is fairly new, and unless a dog has already had the illness and recovered, there is no natural immunity to it. Currently 30 states have reported cases of canine influenza. The virus does ONLY affect dogs.

The canine influenza virus is spread through direct contact (kissing, licking); through the air (coughing or sneezing), and via contaminated surfaces you touch a contaminated surface or dog and then pet your dog).

Asymptomatic dogs can be carriers.

Does your dog:
- Board at a kennel (Some kennels are requiring the vaccine)?
- Attend doggie daycare or group training?
- Visit a groomer?
- Go to the dog park?
- Come in contact with other dogs?

If you answered yes to any of the above, then your dog may be at risk. We recommend that if your pet receives a kennel cough vaccine, then your pet should be vaccinated against the canine influenza virus.

Canine influenza causes non specific upper respiratory symptoms including coughing, fever, nasal discharge, and lack of energy or appetite. The most common sign is a persistent cough which can be moist or dry, similar to what is seen with kennel cough. It can often be difficult to diagnose due to the similarity. Therefore, the best treatment is prevention.

We are now carrying the Canine Influenza Vaccine H3N8. The initial vaccination requires 2 doses, 2-4 weeks apart, followed by annual revaccination. It is our goal to keep you informed so that you may provide the best health care for your pet as possible. Please contact us if you are interested in learning more, or scheduling an appointment for vaccination

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