Several years ago, canine influenza hit Florida, and since it’s initial inception, it has morphed into two strains, H3N8 and H3N2. Over the past several years, Animal Oasis Veterinary Hospital in Naples has unfortunately seen the number of dogs with the canine flu sky-rocket so much that they’ve had to hospitalize many dogs to help them overcome the virus and it’s devasting side effects. That’s why they now offer the canine influenza vaccine. The Bivalent Canine influenza vaccine protects against both strains of the flu.
Flu Vaccine Benefits:
• Decreases sneezing and nasal discharge
• Reduces coughing
• Decreases depression
• Enhances immunity
• Shortens illness length if infected
The Flu and Your Dogs Health
The vast spread of the virus is most likely due to owners traveling with and socializing their pets. Just like the flu virus in humans, the canine version can spread rapidly. If a dog sneezes and the airborne particles reach another dog, either through directly breathing in of the virus spores or through indirect contamination of bodily fluids on hard surfaces, this increases the odds of cross contamination.
The canine flu is contaminating dogs that are typically more socialized. For example, dogs that are boarded, go to training or obedience school, attend doggie daycare, play at dog parks, attend dog shows, or are walked by someone that takes multiple dogs at once from the neighborhood.
The symptoms of H3N2 & H3N8 are the following:
• A runny nose
• Decreased appetite
• Body aches
Although, no one wants their dog to encounter the flu, influenza symptoms typically last 10-14 days, and in most cases, the dog can heal on its own with little difficulty. However, if you have an elderly dog or a puppy, or if your dog’s immune system is low due to disease or other disorders than their complications could be life-threatening. Since a vaccination is now available through your veterinarian, this simple injection could lessen the symptoms if your dog, did, in fact, become infected with the virus.
If you suspect that your dog has the flu, please let your veterinarian’s office know beforehand so that they can make arrangements for your dog to be escorted privately away from other pets. After your pet has been treated, the room will be decontaminated for the next pet to be seen safely.
Additionally, if your dog is sick, immunotherapy injections or supplements may help to fight off the virus more quickly. But keep in mind, just like with humans, other than the preventative vaccination, there is no treatment for influenza.
It’s always best to get your furry friends vaccinated.
The Best Friends Animal Hospital Difference
Best Friends Animal Hospital believes in providing quality health care for your pet in a warm and welcoming environment. Their doctors routinely attend educational seminars to stay abreast of the latest medical treatments and technologies. Their hospital also prides itself on having state-of-the-art equipment including a digital dental X-ray machine. The dental digital X-ray machine allows them to take high-quality dental radiographs in seconds. These images are vital in the completion of the comprehensive oral exam preformed on each patient while they are under anesthesia for their dental cleaning procedure. The veterinarians use the x-rays to check for any disease or abnormalities that could be hidden below the gum line.
Best Friends Animal Hospital offers free 24-hour access to your pet’s medical record through a pet portal, as well as home delivery of your pet’s prescriptions through an online store. Their online Pharmacy carries prescription medications, heartworm, flea and tick preventative, pet food, treats, and toys.
The doctors and staff are devoted to helping your pets’ live longer, healthier, and happier lives because they understand that your pet is a valuable member of your family. Their knowledgeable staff is available to answer any questions you may have, and they look forward to seeing you and your pet(s) soon. Please visit their website to find out more, or call them to book your appointment.
Best Friends Animal Hospital