Canine Flu Outbreak & Vaccine

A very small but serious outbreak of H3N2 canine flu has been reported in the Los Angeles area. While there is not major cause for alarm, responsible dog owners should consider a canine flu vaccination for their dogs. Manhattan Beach Animal Hospital is offering the canine flu vaccine that protects your dog from H3N2.

What is H3N2 Canine Flu?

The H3N2 flu strain of canine flu was first reported in Chicago, back in in 2015. In March 2017, a new outbreak in the Los Angeles area was traced to infected dogs rescued from Asia. According to The Los Angeles County Department of Veterinary Public Health, more than 30 infected dogs had to be quarantined. Thus far, however, there are no cases of canine flu that have been reported outside of Los Angeles County.

This strain of H3N2 – also sometimes called “Asian Flu” – is highly contagious. And, while in most cases it only causes mild sickness – in few cases it can cause fatal pneumonia. The dogs that are at the highest risk of serious complications from H3N2 flu are very young puppies, older dogs, or dogs with underlying medical conditions or a compromised immune systems. Vaccination for these dogs is highly recommended.

There is no evidence that humans can become sick with H3N2 “Asian” canine influenza. However, in very rare cases, there is a remote possibility that cats can also be infected.

Symptoms of H3N2 Canine Flu Breakout in Los Angeles

H3N2 Flu causes dogs to have a persistent cough that can last from 10 to 21 days. Sick dogs can also display symptoms including fever, nasal discharge, lethargy and loss of appetite. In other words, the symptoms are very similar to the human flu.

The virus is spread via coughing, barking and sneezing, as well as contact with contaminated objects such as kennel surfaces, shared food and water bowls – and even toys, balls, collars and leashes.

Since canine flu is highly contagious, if your pet has any signs of respiratory illness, it is important that they stay at home. In order to prevent the potential spread of canine flu, don’t take any dogs displaying any of the symptoms listed above to daycare, a kennel, or a dog park. However, when a dog is most likely to spread the virus, it has no signs yet. That is why vaccination is important in preventing this disease.

veterinarians in south bayH3N2 Canine Flu Vaccine

Fortunately, there is a dog flu vaccine available right now that covers this strain of H3N3. The canine flu vaccine requires two shots, administered by our veterinarians two to four weeks apart.

The canine flu vaccination is particularly recommended for dogs that frequently interact with other dogs, and/or go to public areas with other dogs, including dog parks, kennels or daycare.

Veterinarians H3N2 Canine Flu recommendations for dog owners:

  • Do not allow a sick dog contact with other animals.
  • Do not share food bowls, leashes, toys or other supplies with sick or unknown dogs.
  • If you think your pet has the flu immediately contact our veterinarians.
  • Dogs that come into contact with other dogs should be vaccinated.

 

Our Manhattan Beach Veterinarians offer H3N2 Canine Flu Vaccines

If you would like to bring your dog in for a H3N2 Canine Flu Vaccination, please call our Veterinarians at: 310-536-9654

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