Typically, we only think of humans getting the flu, but dogs are just as susceptible to getting influenza (aka canine influenza). While not life-threatening, canine influenza has the potential to cause serious respiratory ailments such as pneumonia.
What are the Symptoms of Canine Influenza?
Your dog might have canine influenza if it is exhibiting one or more of the following symptoms: loss of appetite, tiredness, running a fever, a runny nose, sneezing, and/or coughing. Take your dog to the veterinarian if your dog has these symptoms for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan.
Is Canine Influenza Contagious?
Yes. A dog can contract the flu simply by having an infected dog sneeze on it. Or your dog can get infected by playing or licking a toy used by a dog with canine influenza. You could actually pass the virus on to your dog. If an infected dog sneezes on you or your clothing, the virus can stay on you long enough to infect your four-legged best friend.
How is Canine Influenza Treated?
If your dog has been diagnosed with canine influenza, the treatment is pretty much the same as for humans as illustrated below. In the event a bacterial infection is diagnosed with the flu, your veterinarian will prescribe an antibiotic.
Make your sure dog gets plenty of rest. A dog with canine influenza will feel weak and tired. It needs to have its strength to be able to fight the disease. Shorter walks, and a nice quiet place to rest will help in your dog’s recovery.
Have your pooch drink lots of water. Drinking water helps keep the respiratory system hydrated which will help thin out the mucus build-up in your dog’s lungs. The liquidity mucus is easier for your dog to cough up and spit out.
Keep other dogs away from your dog for at least two weeks. Your dog’s immune system is busy trying to fight off canine influenza. Having your pooch interact with dogs that might be carrying other diseases can over burden an already compromised system. In addition, your dog will be contagious for the first few days of having the flu which means it will be spreading the virus to other dogs.
Is there a Vaccine for Canine Influenza?
Vaccinating your dog against canine influenza is a good way to protect it especially if your dog comes in constant contact with other dogs. While the vaccine may not prevent your dog from getting the flu, it will help reduce the affects associated with canine influenza.
Nobivac Canine Influenza Vaccine H3N8 is the first vaccine to protect against canine influenza. It has been approved for controlling the disease associated with canine influenza virus (CIV) infection and recommended for use in healthy dogs 6 weeks of age or older. You can get it here without prescription Nobivac Canine Influenza Vaccine H3N8
In conclusion, dogs can get the flu. They usually get canine influenza from infected dogs. Symptoms associated with canine influenza are tiredness, loss of appetite, sneezing, a runny nose, fever, and/or coughing. A veterinarian will be able to properly diagnose your dog for the flu. Treatment for canine influenza includes: having your dog avoids contact with other dogs for at least two weeks, letting your get plenty of rest, and giving it plenty of water. Vaccinating your dog against canine influenza is highly recommended in areas prone to this disease.