As flu season is starting to rev up for humans, so is canine influenza. Residents in the Washington metropolitan area have reported cases of canine influenza, specifically in Montgomery Country where six dogs have been reported to be infected with the disease. According to the CDC, the canine influenza is a contagious respiratory disease in dogs.
Here are some important facts to keep in mind about the canine flu:
- The virus is not dangerous: Dogs cannot catch the flu from people and people can't catch it from dogs. However, dogs are not immune to the flu and can easily catch it from other dogs they are around.
- Symptoms include a fever, persistent cough, and a runny nose. If your dog has all of these symptoms, you should take them to a local veterinarian to get a diagnosis. The canine flu can have similarities to other respiratory diseases, so it's best to let your veterinarian confirm its the flu.
- Treatment: The flu can be easily treated with antibiotics prescribed by your veterinarian. If not treated, the canine flu can lead to a secondary infection that could develop into pneumonia.