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Whole Pet Clinic - Canine Influenza Information
Updated 12/11/15: There are four confirmed cases of Canine Influenza Virus (CVI) in the Dane County area. All four dogs are from the same household and had recent exposure to dogs in Chicago.
The symptoms of this disease are mild in most dogs - including coughing, sometimes with nasal discharge, but about 10% of dogs develop a more severe form of the disease which can require hospitalization.
Who is at Risk: Settings where numerous dogs are together in high-density areas, especially indoors, have higher risk-factor. Dog shows or shelters where dogs come together from potentially far and wide and share secretions are the highest risk category. Indoor dog kennels / daycare are at some risk also. Dog parks, if the wrong dog just happens to be there, also do pose some risk.
Canine influenza virus can be spread by direct contact with respiratory discharge from infected dogs, through the air via a cough, bark, or sneeze, and by contact with contaminated objects such as dog bowls and clothing.
Symptoms: Infected dogs will have any or all of the following: fever, listlessness, poor appetite, coughing, and/or a snotty nose.
How to prevent: Do not allow your dog to socialize with coughing dogs. If your dog develops a cough, your dog should be seen for an exam.
UPDATE: Recent information from the veterinary laboratories testing for the virus revealed that the virus found in these dogs the new strain of Canine Influenza (H3N2), not H3N8. This new strain - similar to H3N8 - is not transmissable to humans - but can infect cats which is a notable difference. It is unknown at this time how much protection the vaccine for the H3N8 strain provides for this new strain. There is a new vaccine for the H3N2 strain available now.
The vaccine available for the H3N8 and the new one both require 2 doses of vaccine 2-4 weeks apart. It is generally a well tolerated vaccine. Adverse events reported were similar to those seen with other common canine vaccines and included vomiting, lethargy, and minor injection site swelling.
We are following the UW School of Veterinary Medicine's advice and are recommending that all high risk dogs be vaccinated.
Click here for a printout on Canine Influenza with more information to share with family and friends.