With five recently confirmed cases of canine influenza in Minnesota, we would like to inform our clients of how it spreads and other vital information they need to know about it. Canine influenza is most common among dogs in close physical proximity to each other. This can happen at boarding kennels, dog parks, animal shelters, dog daycare centers, and other locations where large groups of dogs congregate. The first outbreak among companion dogs occurred in the summer of 2015.
The Spread and Symptoms of Canine Influenza
The most common way that an infected dog spreads influenza is through his or her sneeze droplets. A dog can also pick it up by encountering a contaminated surface such as a food bowl. Unfortunately, it’s not always obvious that a dog has acquired the influenza virus. Depending on the strain of the virus, an infected dog who doesn’t show any outward signs of being ill can spread the influenza virus for seven to 21 days.
A dog infected with the influenza virus may develop either mild or severe symptoms. A cough that persists for up to three weeks is the most common indication with the milder type. A low-grade fever and nasal discharge are common symptoms as well. Dogs who acquire the severe strain of influenza can run a fever up to 106 degrees, develop pneumonia, and struggle with an increased respiratory rate. One to five percent of dogs with the severe pneumatic strain will die from the virus.
Bivalent Vaccine for Dogs in High-Risk Populations
Cedar Pet Clinic Lake Elmo encourages people whose dogs frequent dog parks, daycare centers, or boarding kennels to consider the Bivalent vaccine against canine influenza. You may also want to consider the vaccine if you have recently adopted a dog from an animal shelter. If you’re uncertain if your dog is high-risk or you’re concerned he or she may have picked up the influenza virus, please don’t hesitate to contact us at Cedar Pet Clinic Lake Elmo.