As we protect ourselves this flu season, or recovering from one, we like to bring your attention to dog flu. Yes, our dogs can catch the flu too. So, lets see what we can do to protect our beloved companions from the Canine Flu,aka “dog flu”.
1. What are the symptoms of dog flu?
Loss of appetite
2. How is the dog flu transmitted?
Canine flu can be easily spread between dogs through airborne secretions such as sneezing and panting. It can also be transmitted through canine contacts with contaminated objects and by people who have been around infected dogs.
3. Can people catch the flu from their dogs?
According to animal health research, people and dogs are susceptible to different strains of the flu virus. According to the CDC (Centers For Disease Control), people do not need to worry about catching the flu from their dogs since they have not seen evidence of such.
4. How serious is dog flu?
Without proper veterinary care, secondary infections may occur, leading to pneumonia that is life threatening.
5. How can I protect my dog from catching the dog flu?
Just like people, the more the dog is out in areas with contacts to a lot of other dogs, the higher the risk is to catching the flu. Such areas include dog parks, dog shows and dog beaches.
Dog flu vaccine is available at veterinary offices but it does not prevent the dog from getting the virus, just lessen the severity and duration of the sickness. Talk to a vet about the risk and whether or not a vaccination is necessary.
Sandy Eckstein, Dogs and Flu: What You Need to Know, WebMD Pet Health Feature, http://pets.webmd.com/dogs-and-flu-what-you-need-to-know, retrieved 1/24/2013