Protecting Your Dog against Dog Flu

By March 22 | See Comments

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It is no longer a big secret that man’s best friend would get affected by the influenza virus. It was confirmed in 2004 that the H3N8 influenza virus can cause influenza or flu in dogs. Without any previous exposure to the virus, the dogs do not have the natural immunity to prevent it. Even though the mortality rate due to flu is low in canines, the chances of your pet catching the influenza virus are high.

What to look for

In cases where the flu is mild, your dogs may develop a moist cough, which could last for 10 to 30 days. Greenish discharge from nose and eyes and decreased appetite are other signs. If the condition is severe, they might even catch pneumonia; the pneumonia is usually caused by secondary bacteria. Without proper treatment, the disease could even turn fatal in some cases.All this information need not get you worried. There are ways to make sure that your pet is not affected by the virus. As we all know, prevention is better than cure. So, here are some preventive measures.

Get your dog vaccinated

The canine flu virus hasn’t shown any signs of mutation, unlike its human counterpart. So, the best preventive measure against the flu is vaccination. You will have to get two doses of vaccination for your dogs—the second one should be taken within two to four weeks after taking the first.

Keep him alone for a few days

The other best thing you can do is to keep him from making contact with other dogs. As the canine influenza virus is only transmitted through canines, preventing contact from other dogs should keep your dog healthy.

Keep yourself clean

Clean yourself after interacting with other pets. Make sure you change your clothes before going back to your dog. Better yet, avoid contact with other dogs showing the symptoms of the fly.

Keep his playthings clean

Hard surfaces can be a breeding ground for viruses. Viruses can survive on such surfaces for as long as 48 hours. So, clean his chew toy or bowl with disinfectants if it had come in contact with other dogs.

Use gloves while interacting with other dogs

If there is no way you can stay away from dogs which have got the flu, use gloves while interacting with them. Make sure that your healthy dog doesn’t come into contact with the gloves.

Isolate the affected dogs

If one of your dogs gets affected by the virus, make sure you separate the infected dog from the healthy one.Even with all these precautions, you must be on the lookout for symptoms in your dog. If you find something suspicious, make sure you contact your vet. Even at the clinic, make sure your dog doesn’t come into contact with other pets. Consult with your vet and make sure his symptoms don’t develop into its severe stage.

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