Concerned dog owners have been calling our New Ulm, Minnesota veterinary hospital concerned about the news regarding the Canine Influenza Virus (CIV) outbreak in Chicago and Wisconsin. New Ulm Regional Veterinary Center offers the following 6 important facts regarding this emerging condition.
1. What is Canine Influenza Virus?
- CIV is highly contagious respiratory disease in dogs caused by a specific Type A influenza virus. This is a disease of dogs, not of humans.
- There have been sporadic outbreaks throughout the country dating back to 2009. Canine Influenza virus has been reported in 30 states.
2. Symptoms of Canine Influenza Virus
- Coughing, sneezing, runny nose, nasal discharge, loss of appetite, lethargy and fever
3. Transmission of Canine Influenza Virus
- Dogs infected will shed CIV in body secretions whether or not they appear to be sick.
- Virus transmission can occur from direct or indirect contact with an infected dog or with its secretions.
- The virus persists on toys, bowls, collars, leashes etc. for several days. Infected animals are considered contagious for 14 days.
- Any dog that interacts with large numbers of dogs is at increased risk for exposure. Therefore, do not ignore a coughing dog. Do not allow your dog to socialize with coughing dogs.
4. Testing for Canine Influenza Virus
- Diagnostic tests can be performed using respiratory secretions collected at the time of disease onset.
5. Treatment of Canine Influenza Virus
- As with any disease caused by a virus, treatment is largely supportive and treatment of secondary infections is important
6. Prevention of Canine Influenza Virus
- Approved vaccines are available. Talk with your veterinarian about your dog’s risk factors and the pros and cons of vaccinating for canine influenza virus.
For more information about the Canine Influenza Virus (CIV) go to: https://www.avma.org/KB/Resources/FAQs/Pages/Control-of-Canine-Influenza-in-Dogs.aspx