Though you are familiar with flu outbreaks, but did you know that even dogs can catch the flu. If you are a dog owner, you need not panic, but you should be aware of the facts about the canine flu so that you make sure how your pet stays happy and healthy.


Canine influenza, also known as dog flu, is an infectious respiratory disease that is caused by a virus called influenza. Two strains of the virus that can cause canine influenzas are H3N8 and H3N2. Both variants infect the respiratory system and are quite contagious among dogs.


Common signs of canine influenza are:

*Difficulty breathing



*Nasal discharge


*Wet or dry cough

*Reduced appetite

*Runny eyes

If you suspect your dog has any signs of canine influenza, contact your vet, and schedule an appointment immediately.


As in human forms of the flu, canine influenza is also an airborne virus that affects the respiratory system of the host(dog). It spread through respiratory droplets when the dog cough, bark, or sneeze. It can even spread through contaminated objects in the environment such as food and water bowls, kennel, collars, surfaces, bedding, and pet toys.


When going to the veterinarian make sure to mention all the concerns as canine influenza is highly contagious. Your vet may request you to wait outside until your appointment time to prevent further spreading of the virus within the waiting room. Diagnosing canine influenza can be difficult without a vet as the virus shares some symptoms as compared to kennel cough. Your vet will conduct a physical examination and may request any additional tests needed to confirm.

Treatment focuses on supporting the dog by keeping them comfortable during its recovery. In mild cases, cough suppressants may be given a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication to bring down the fever. If a secondary infection has developed as a result of the flu, in that case, antibiotics will be administered.

Rest and isolating your pet from other dogs are also key components in canine influenza treatment. Vets recommend quarantine for a minimum duration of 21 days to reduce the risk of transmission and ensure proper recovery. In some severe cases, the pets are treated with broad-spectrum antibiotics, fluids, and sometimes supportive in-hospital care. Some cases can lead to pneumonia which can become serious and deadly, if untreated.

Your vet will discuss appropriate quarantine procedures to prevent the spread of the virus in your home and give you information about pet-safe disinfectant solutions to help kill the virus in your home. All surfaces, leashes, clothing, collars, equipment, toys, bedding, and serving bowls need to be disinfected with the solution.


The vaccine is available for each strain. If you live in the surrounding where outbreaks are common or travel a lot with your pet, your veterinarian may recommend the vaccine as a precaution for your pet.

This is the best way to prevent your dog from contracting canine flu and keep him away from public areas such as dog-friendly parks and restaurants as well as kennels when are recent cases reported in that area. This will reduce the risk for your pet.

For any details call us today and book an appointment.