Believe it or not dogs are catching to Flu now too! A new dog flu is sweeping across the U.S. What started in only the Midwest is now on the move. This new strain of the canine influenza known as H3N2 is confirmed on the east coast in Georgia.
H3N2 just like other strains of the influenza virus can be deadly. Symptoms include coughing, fever, runny nose or nasal discharge, lethargy, and anorexia ( lack of appetite). Just because your dog is up to date on his vaccines does not mean he is safe from this strain of flu. As vaccines are produced every year for both humans and dogs, the virus' mutate causing new strains and variations that are resistant to the vaccines, therefore your dogs can still become sick even with proper vaccination.
In April , H3N2 virus had sickened more then 1,000 dogs in Chicago. It is now confirmed in several other states including, Ohio, Alabama, California, Texas, Massachusetts, New York, Wisconsin, Michigan, New Jersey, Iowa and Indiana. The current estimate of dogs infected throughout the country is into the several thousands but has not yet reached 10,000.
How is the virus spreading? It is believed the virus is spreading threw nose to nose contact. According to the CDC at this time there is no evidence the virus can transfer from dog to human. It CAN however transfer from dog to cat. Estimated death rate will be 2-3% of dogs infected so don't panic if your dog contracts the virus, but do seek a veterinarian immediately. Most animals with canine influenza recover over a period of 2-3 weeks. There is no " cure" for the virus.