Canine flu is a contagious viral disease that can spread quickly among dogs. It affects a dog's respiratory system and may cause serious illness. In the US, outbreaks of canine flu were first reported in 2004 and the virus has since spread across the country.
Dogs have no natural immunity from the flu virus and dogs of any age or breed can get the disease. Similar to human flu, it is contagious and is usually spread when dogs come into contact with infected dogs in places such as dog parks, at dog shows, boarding kennels, grooming facilities, veterinary hospitals and humane shelters.
It is important to know and recognize the signs of infection both in your dog and in other dogs that your dog may come into contact with. Most cases of canine flu are mild and include signs such as:
Some dogs may develop a more severe disease, which could develop into pneumonia. If you notice any of these signs, it is important that you contact your veterinarian.
All dogs can get canine flu and are at risk of exposure to the flu virus, especially in places where dogs gather.
Does your dog go to:
If you checked any of the above, it is important that you take steps to help protect your dog from canine flu. Talk to your veterinarian about available preventative options such as vaccination.
Just as you take steps to protect yourself from the flu every year, it is also important to help protect your dog
Vaccines for canine flu have recently been developed to help protect dogs against this newly emerging desease.
Vaccinating against canine flu can be beneficial by