There is an outbreak of canine influenza that that has hit its fourth state in 2017! The flu, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) causes a runny nose, cough, fever, lethargy, an eye discharge, and a loss of appetite.
Dogs living in Kentucky, California, Florida, and central Ohio have come down with the flu, so far there are 87 confirmed cases! The flu is not deadly, but it is very contagious which has caused groomers, boarders, veterinarians, and shelters to fear an epidemic. Some boarding facilities have closed due to the number of cases.
Dr. Edward Cooper, the head of small animal emergency and critical care services at Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center, says that an outbreak of this nature will not last long and is best contained if pets stay home. The canine flu is spread by sneezes, coughs, and direct contact. It can live on skin, clothes and other surfaces for several hours so you could bring it home to your house. Within one week after exposure, symptoms will appear.
It is best to avoid dog parks and kennels and the vet to prevent your dog from getting ill. The flu runs its course in a couple of weeks, and veterinarians suggest that you care for your dog at home unless their symptoms are severe. A young or older dog is more likely to develop severe symptoms and even secondary infections. The disease is not being tracked by any health agency, and it is possible that there are more than 87 cases out there!
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