SOURCE: Dessau Veterinary Clinic

November 02, 2011 09:05 ET

Austin Animal Clinic Warns of Canine Influenza, Urges Vaccination

AUSTIN, TX--(Marketwire - Nov 2, 2011) - Dessau Veterinary Clinic is warning Austin and Pflugerville pet owners about canine influenza, also known as dog flu or H3N8. Since September, 30 confirmed cases of canine influenza have been reported in San Antonio, and an additional 70 cases are suspected. Dogs that frequently attend boarding, daycare or dog parks are at increased risk for contracting the virus. Dessau Veterinary Clinic carries the canine influenza vaccine and encourages pet owners to vaccinate their dogs.

Dr. Kellee K. Campbell, a veterinarian with Dessau Veterinary Clinic, is urging pet owners to take precautions against canine influenza. With more than 30 confirmed cases reported in September, and an additional 70 suspected, any dog who has not been vaccinated against the virus is at risk.

"Since the majority of local dogs have not been vaccinated, canine influenza poses an emerging threat to our pet community," said Dr. Campbell. "I strongly encourage all dog owners to consider vaccinating their dogs against this virus."

Dessau Veterinary Clinic carries the vaccine for Austin and Pflugerville dogs.

According to Dr. Campbell, many infected dogs may appear to be healthy and still spread the virus. Dogs that frequently visit dog parks, puppy daycare or dog boarding facilities are at increased risk.

"This is an airborne virus that can easily be spread between canines in dog grooming or boarding facilities, along with dog parks," said Dr. Campbell. "Since it's not practical to keep a dog at home all day, it's inevitable that your dog will be exposed to the illness. Prevention through vaccination is truly the best treatment."

Canine influenza symptoms include fever, a runny nose and coughing. However, since many other illnesses also share these symptoms, two tests are necessary to confirm the virus. Some dogs may show no symptoms.

"There is no 'cure' for canine influenza," said Dr. Campbell. "At our animal clinic, we will do our best to provide supportive care, including keeping the dog hydrated and comfortable. As a veterinarian, my goal is to prevent secondary infections and support the dog's immune system as it fights off the virus."

A severe or untreated case may lead to pneumonia, which can be fatal if the dog's immune system becomes overwhelmed.

Canine influenza was first recorded in 2004, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Cases have been reported in 38 different states, including Texas, and the CDC considers the virus to be a "newly emerging pathogen in dogs."

The disease cannot infect humans, nor can it jump to cats or other animal species.

"This recent outbreak in San Antonio is a critical reminder of the importance of vaccinations," said Dr. Campbell. "We offer full vaccination protocols at our Pflugerville animal clinic, as well as routine wellness exams."

Pet owners who wish to learn more about the canine influenza vaccination, Austin dog boarding, and pet grooming, or to schedule an appointment with a veterinarian, can do so through the website at http://dessauvetclinic.com.

Contact Information

  • Dessau Veterinary Clinic
    Austin, TX
    1-888-667-5235