Canine Influenza Virus
Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital would like to keep you up to date about the Canine Influenza Virus and your dog’s potential risk. The Bay Area has recently been impacted by the Canine Influenza Virus (CiV). There are now several confirmed cases in the South Bay with more reports coming in daily. To date, there is no evidence that the canine influenza virus is transmittable to humans.
Similar to the human flu, the canine influenza virus is highly contagious and is spread through close contact with an infected dog. The infected dog is typically spreading the virus during the incubation period (day 2-4) before they become symptomatic around day 5. The symptoms are respiratory in nature and can vary from one case to another. Some dogs can have mild symptoms such as a fever, runny nose, lethargy, and a cough. Others have become severely ill with life threatening symptoms such as pneumonia.
Since the virus is contagious through close inter-dog contact clients should consider the vaccine especially if their dog frequents doggie day cares, dog parks, boarding facilities, groomers, or anywhere else they may have close interaction with other dogs.
We have the newly released vaccine that provides protection against both the H3N8 and H3N2 Canine Influenza strains that we are seeing in the reported cases. We urge you to consider vaccinating your dog if you feel your dog may be at risk. An appointment with one of our daytime general practice doctors can be made by calling Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital. Your dog will be vaccinated at the time of this doctor appointment and will need to return for a booster vaccination 3-4 weeks later. The booster vaccine can be scheduled as a technician appointment. If Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital is not your primary veterinarian, then contact your hospital for their policies.
We have not required the Canine Influenza vaccination series for our boarding patients prior to this Bay Area outbreak, however, we will be requiring it in all dogs to keep our boarding patients as safe as possible. All boarding patients as of March 1, 2018 will need to have completed the two-vaccination protocol prior to coming in for boarding. We will be calling all of our upcoming boarding patients to have them make an appointment to come in to start the vaccination series. Although dogs do not have full immunity until after the booster has been administered, it is beneficial to at least have one vaccination given before exposure to other dogs.
Here are a few links for a more comprehensive review and information about the bivalent vaccination we are using here at Berkeley Dog and Cat Hospital: