HEALTH ALERT FOR ALL DOG OWNERS

IMPORTANT NEW HEALTH ALERT for your dogs and cats.  

MAY 15, 2015  There are many of you that might already be familiar with the new strain of dog flu that is spreading across the United States like wildfire. But for those of you that have not yet heard, this new stain of canine influenza is called H3N2 and there is NO vaccine for this virus as yet. This is a highly contagious respiratory virus that can spread rapidly from dog to dog in kennels and shelters and at dog parks and at your groomers. This virus spreads from dog to dog quite easily by dogs sneezing in the vicinity of each other. It also spreads through their belongings as well, like shared water and food bowls, collars or clothing, etc. And this virus can also be spread to cats from infected materials or by handling an infected dog and then petting a unsuspecting healthy cat. There are several symptoms to look out for, namely, a soft, moist or dry cough, sneezing, wheezing, a runny nose, fever, lethargy and a smaller appetite.  First reported in the Chicago area April 2015, where more than 1,100 dogs have been sickened and five have died.

TLC Pet Transport feels that it is extremely important and is requesting that your dogs visit their vet 5 to 10 days prior to their transport with us and that your vet run the actual test for this H3N2 strain of the flu.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture and the Ohio Veterinary Medical Association have stated that because this particular strain of flu has not been identified as being transmittable to people, veterinarians are not required to report cases to the state. But please be aware and check your dogs often, especially if they have been kenneled or have play dates with other dogs at dog parks. Again, signs of the flu are discharge from the eyes, a persistent cough, a runny nose and sometimes a fever.

There is no vaccine for the H3N2 strain of the virus — and it is “highly contagious among dogs”

Dog owners, please keep an eye on your pets. If your dog shows symptoms, it should be examined by a vet — and kept away from other dogs. If your dog should encounter a dog that’s coughing, I would definitely avoid that dog.

Below is a story I found in the newspaper last week concerning a dog owner and her little West Highland Terrier………………………………………….

Dr.Jodi Houser runs the Newark Animal Hospital. “I never suspected I would get a positive test, So when I did, I really kept looking at it to make sure that’s what it was,” said Dr. Houser. The dog, named Katie, came from Sharp Run Kennels in Millersberg, with what her owners thought was “kennel cough.” “She had just a little bit of a wheeze. Nothing really triggered any real concern,” says owner Linda Lucas. But complications from severe cases of this new highly contagious strain of dog flu can lead to pneumonia or even death. H3N2 is easily passed on to other pets including cats. “That’s why it’s critical that if anyone has a pet that has recently come from a breeder or shelter or been to a dog park or a groomer and they are coughing or lethargic or not eating or not responding to typical treatment, they need to be tested.”  Houser went on to say to look for cough, runny nose and fever, but not all dogs will show signs of illness. Few veterinarians test for the virus.

Former president of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Dr. Douglas Aspros says “It is an epidemic. It’s not however something people should panic about, we’re not talking about thousands of dogs being brought to their knees.”

A vaccine to protect dogs against canine influenza  H3N8 has been available in the United States since 2009.

It is not known yet whether that vaccine will offer protection against this H3N2 dog flu virus that is spreading here of late..

There is no evidence that dogs can transmit the flu to people and there have been no reported human infections.

Although dogs cannot transmit the flu to people, people can transfer it from one pet to another, so it’s a better idea than ever to wash your own hands after a visit to places like the dog park.

The canine H3N2 strain emerged in Asia in 2006-2007.

It is a respiratory illness that can spread quickly among dogs and even cats.

There is no vaccine for H3N2 and few veterinarians test for the virus, so this confirmed case in Holmes county is a serous warning for pet owners in the state.

A NOTE TO ALL TLC CUSTOMERS………PLEASE KNOW THAT WE WILL BE TAKING EXTRA PRECAUTIONS IN TRANSPORTING YOUR BELOVED PETS ACROSS THE COUNTRY. ALL DOGS MUST PROVE TO BE IN EXCELLENT HEALTH BEFORE THEY CAN COME ABOARD OUR VANS. WE WILL REQUIRE THAT ALL DOGS BE TESTED FOR THE H3N2 VIRUS IN ORDER TO TRANSPORT WITH US. ALL CRATES AND VANS WILL BE TRIPLE ***STERILIZED AFTER EACH USE. OUR DRIVERS WILL WALK YOUR DOGS AT ‘OUT OF THE WAY’ AND SELDOM USED AREAS. AND THEY WILL ALSO CLOSELY MONTITER YOUR PETS THROUGHOUT THEIR ENTIRE TRANSPORT.

***TLC Pet Transport uses a product called Triple Quick which is a powerful disinfectant that kills all known viruses, including parvo and mersa.

 

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