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Canine influenza H3N2, or dog flu, has recently been confirmed in Los Angeles county in the Sherman Oaks area. In consequence, 35 dogs in the county have been placed under quarantine so far this month. Canine influenza is highly contagious. It can be spread by direct contact, through the air when contaminated dogs cough or sneeze, and/or from contact with contaminated objects. Dogs who are infected can be contagious for up to 30 days and the virus typically lives for 1-2 days outside of a host. Symptoms include fever, coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, loss of appetite, and lack of energy. Dog flu can also cause illness in cats who usually show signs of coughing, sneezing, and discharge from the eyes and nose. There is currently no vaccination for cats.

If you take your dog any place where there is a high concentration of dogs (i.e. boarding or day care facility, dog parks, or grooming facility) we recommend vaccination for protection against both types of canine influenza H3N2 and H3N8. Call us now 805-529-7003 to schedule an appointment for this combination vaccine. Dogs who receive it for the first time will need a booster 2-4 weeks after the initial vaccination.

The H3N2 virus was first reported in the United States in 2015 and caused a large outbreak in the Chicago area. Click here to learn more about canine influenza.