The canine influenza outbreak that originated in Chicago has confirmed cases in several other states, including one confirmed case in Newark, OH. We continue to closely monitoring this outbreak to keep you informed for your pets’ safety. At this time, however, we are unaware of any cases of Canine Influenza (or Dog Flu) in the Greater Cleveland, OH area.
Here 5 questions and answers about Canine Influenza:
1. Can Canine Influenza be passed to people?
– There is no evidence that this canine influenza strain (H3N2) can be transmitted to people.
2. Should I vaccinate my dog?
– It is unlikely that the current available canine influenza vaccine (for H3N8) is effective against this new canine influenza strain (H3N2). We are unaware of any recent cases of the original canine influenza strain (H3N8) in the Cleveland, OH area. Therefore at this time, we are not recommending dogs be vaccinated at this time for canine influenza.
3. Can cats get Canine Influenza?
– While cats are reported in Asia to have gotten the H3N2 Canine Influenza strain, we are unaware of any cats in the United States that have this virus.
4. What are the symptoms of Canine Influenza?
- high fever
- loss of appetite
- nasal discharge, and
(These signs are also common to other respiratory illnesses.)
5. What can I do to protect my dog?
-If you are traveling to areas with your dog where Canine Influenza has been confirmed, we recommend avoiding dog parks or boarding facilities that allow the pets to interact. Keep your dog on a leash and avoid contact with other dogs. If you care for multiple dogs use good hygiene. Wash your hands after handling each dog.
If your pet is showing any of the signs discussed above call your veterinarian. At Big Creek Pet Hospital, the PCR respiratory panel we use includes testing for Canine Influenza and multiple other respiratory diseases.
If you have questions about canine influenza or other pet health concerns please call Big Creek Pet Hospital, 440-234-5831. We will continue to provide updates about this serious outbreak especially with respect to Greater Cleveland.