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Dog Flu Confirmed in Florida

May 31st, 2017 by Jake Stofan
The Florida Department of agriculture say 12 cases of the highly contagious dog flu have been confirmed by the University of Florida.
Most dogs have no immunity and are not vaccinated for the disease.
Pet owners are being urged to keep an eye out for symptoms in their dogs.
Coughing, sneezing, and lethargic behavior can all be signs a dog is infected.
Symptoms only show up in 80% of dogs. To be safe vets recommend limiting exposure to other dogs.
“It can spread quickly especially in boarding kennels, hospitals, dog parks, places like that. So if they show symptoms, they’re spreading this disease and they can spread it up to four weeks,” said Dr. Karis Dickey with North Florida Animal Hospital.
The Florida Humane Society say it’s taking similar precautions.
“Our guard is always up and we’re always extra careful. And I think this is just an opportunity for owners to kind of take the same awareness and take the same precautions that we would,” said Lisa Glunt, Director of the Leon County Humane Society.
Never before seen in Florida, the first seven cases were reported Tuesday, by Wednesday the number was up to 12.
“They believe that it originated from two possible dog shows. One in Perry Georgia and the other in Deland Florida. All of the dogs that they’re currently treating are in stable condition,” said Jeann Meale with the Florida Department of Agriculture.
Dog Flu isn’t generally fatal, but when left untreated veterinarians say it can develop into potentially life threatening conditions.
“Usually they don’t develop serious cases. Dogs that do develop serious cases can get phenomena and they need to be hospitalized for treatment,” said Dr. Dickey.
Vaccinations for dog flu do exist.
They’re not 100% effective, but can reduce your dogs risk of getting the disease and also reduce their chance of spreading it.
Vaccines run between $20 and $40.
Although less common, the disease has also been known to spread to cats.

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