Florida is experiencing an outbreak of a highly contagious dog flu strain - dog owners should get their pets vaccinated as soon as possible!

Sources say that “the nation’s 80 million dogs have no immunity to the flu, and it has already infected thousands of dogs in 30 states since first being reported in the U.S. in 2015."

The outbreak first began in May and is the first in Florida. UF has tested and confirmed the H3N2 canine influenza virus in more than a dozen dogs.

Pet First Aid Icon to protect against the flue

Symptoms include:

  • persistent cough
  • nasal discharge
  • fever during the first few days
  • lethargy
  • eye discharge
  • reduced appetite

Most dogs recover without complications, but some develop pneumonia, which can be life threatening.

The virus is spread by contact from infected dogs and through coughing, barking and sneezing. The virus can also survive for up to 24 hours on clothing, hands, toys, leashes, food and water dishes, and other contaminated objects. Cats can also contract the virus, but there’s no vaccine for them.

Dogs at the highest risk for exposure to the virus are those who have a social lifestyle and participate in public events such as shows and training, and those who boarded, go to dog parks or attend doggy day care.

Call our office for more information 386-586-3000. We want to keep your pet safe and protected!