Thursday, January 27, 2011


We humans usually get our flu shots in October or November each year to help prevent getting the flu virus and feeling awful. Over the past several years, many dogs in 34 states have become ill from a year long flu virus which is highly contagious.

Canine Influenza Virus (CIV from this point on) causes respiratory infection in dogs and is often called the "dog flu". Every one of our puppies and dogs is vulnerable to this illness. CIV was identified in 2005 by Dr. Cynda Crawford. This canine virus has been documented in animal shelters, boarding kennels, dog parks and tracks, pet stores and humane and rescue groups.

There is no evidence at this time that the "dog flu" can spread to humans. However, it may be wise that young children, pregnant women and the elderly limit or even avoid contact with dogs that are ill.

Common symptoms of CIV:
·         Cough that worsens with activity and persists for minutes
·         Frequent sneezing
·         Runny nose with clear or thick green nasal discharge
·         Fever 103° to 106°
·         Tiredness
·         Difficulty breathing
·         Loss of appetite
How does CIV spread? This virus passes from one dog to another through tiny virus particles in the air. This is done by coughing or sneezing, touching noses and playing with infected dog toys.
 What should you do if your puppy develops a cough? Call your Vet and describe the symptoms. Make an appointment to see your Vet so your pet can be evaluated and recommend the proper course of treatment.
 Your dog should be brought to a special area, not to the waiting room where other dogs are present.
 All dogs, regardless of breed or age, are susceptible and have no immunity to CIV. Puppies and older dogs have the greatest risk of death to this virus, up to 10%. CIV will develop in 80-90% of all dogs exposed to this flu virus.

*Please contact your Vet and ask if this Canine Influenza Virus is present in your area. Also, it is extremely vital that your dog is up-to-date on all of its vaccines.
 Sherry’s Shih Poos

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