Dog Flu Vaccine Available
Roscoe Village Animal Hospital now carries the H3N2 vaccine for the new strain of canine influenza virus that is still affecting dogs in and around the Chicagoland area. The H3N2 virus was the main cause of the influenza epidemic seen this past spring. Due to the severity of the disease associated with this virus, the vaccine company, Zoetis quickly responded to produce a safe and effective vaccine. The vaccine does not prevent infection but rather significantly reduces both the severity of the influenza symptoms and the shedding of the virus into the environment by the infected dog. (Zoetis H3N2 vaccine is covered by their Companion Animal Immunization Support Guarantee, up to $5,000 for reasonable treatments and diagnostics.)
Information reported by the University of Wisconsin shows that the H3N2 virus may shed for an extended period of time; up to 24 days, which is far longer than what is seen with H3N8 influenza virus according to Dr. Edward Dubovi, a leading researcher investigating canine influenza virus at Cornell University. It is also estimated that the H3N2 virus produces 10 times more virus than the H3N8 strain, which makes it far more contagious. The viral infection can spread quickly among social dogs in dog daycares, boarding facilities, and dog parks. Dr. Dubovi is a proponent of vaccination, saying “preventing the transmission of the disease through vaccination is highly recommended for those dogs that have lifestyles that put them at greater risk.”
The doctors of Roscoe Village Animal Hospital are recommending that dogs who spend any time socializing with other dogs at dog parks, or go to boarding, day care or grooming facilities be vaccinated against the H3N2 strain of canine influenza. We also carry the H3N8 vaccine to protect against the other know canine influenza vaccination H3H8.
Both H3N2 & H3N8 are approved for patients 8 weeks and older
administered as a series of 2 separate injections, that are administered 2-3 weeks apart.
Protection against canine influenza is expected to last for 1 year.
We are also recommending dog owners isolate their pets from other dogs and cats if their dog has any of the following influenza symptoms :
– Nasal discharge
– Sneezing with thick secretions
– Loss of appetite
If you have any questions regarding the influenza virus, suspect your dog (or cat) may have symptoms or would like to schedule an appointment for the vaccinations with one of our technicians, please call Roscoe Village Animal Hospital at 773-549-3131.
The Doctors and Staff of Roscoe Village Animal Hospital