More cases of dog flu confirmed in Florida

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By: Amy Robinson | WCTV Eyewitness News
June 19, 2017

Photo: CBS Television / MGN

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine says the number of confirmed dog flu cases in the state has now risen to 21.

The UF College of Veterinary Medicine first reported a handful of canine influenza cases in late May.

Officials also say that the total number of cases could be higher because some veterinarians are seeing and treating dog flu cases without involvement from UF, and the state does not require veterinarians to report these cases.

UF officials add that the cases originated in north and central Florida.

Heath officials are urging pet owners to vaccinate their dogs against the virus and to call their veterinarian before heading to the clinic if they suspect their dog may have canine influenza.

For more information on canine influenza, visit hospitals.vetmed.ufl.edu/canine-influenza.


By: Erin Lisch | WCTV Eyewitness News
June 15, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Strong warnings Thursday from Tallahassee vets after the dog flu comes to the Capital City.

According to local vets, it's the first confirmed case of the dog flu in our area.

However, more than a dozen cases reported across the state over the last month after dogs shows in Perry, Georgia and Deland, Florida.

Veterinarians at the Animal Hospital at Southwood are taking extra precautions saying this is an extremely contagious virus.

If you think your dog has the flu, they don't even want you to bring the pet inside.

Dog parks, a place for pups to socialize is now a potential breeding ground for contracting the dog flu which is in our area.

Dr. Julie Moodoyan of the Animal Hospital at Southwood says the flu can be fatal and that data shows in up to five percent of dogs who contract it.

Dr. Moodoyan said when it comes to this strain, "There are already have been at least four reported deaths in this outbreak."

She says it hits puppies and older dogs the hardest and those that are immune suppressed.

"Most dogs who get it are going to recover, but every dog that comes into contact with it will get sick," said Dr. Moodoyan.

Once a dog is vaccinated, Dr. Moodoyan says it takes a month for it to become immune. Tallahassee residents have mixed levels of concern.

Dog owner Kristen Shaw said, "Just like I get flu shots every year I think I would get them for him too."

Owner of two dogs Terry VandenHeuvel said, "Right now I'm not that concerned if it gets more cases I will be concerned."

Dog owner Gabby Garrison said, "Knowing that it's a little bit more contagious that I thought I'll see if it's like more worth it than I thought to bring her into the vet."

Dr. Moodoyan says the vaccine is the only way to avoid this flu, "Right now we only have one confirmed case in Tallahassee, in the next month there's no tell what's going to happen."

They haven't released what animal hospital treated the infected dog in Tallahassee.

On Sunday at The Animal Hospital there will be a Canine Influenza Vaccine Clinic from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Please call for an appointment because limited spaces are available 850-942-6650 or 850-385-8181
You can find more information here.

By: Amy Robinson | WCTV Eyewitness News
June 15, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- We're learning about a confirmed a case of H3N2 canine influenza or 'dog flu' in Tallahassee.

Thursday, the Animal Hospital and Pet Resort at Southwood posted an alert about the confirmed case to Facebook. They say the case was not discovered at their facility.

Dog flu is highly contagious between dogs but the mortality rate is low. Many dogs suffering from dog flu have a fever, decreased appetite, and lethargy during the first few days of illness. Canine influenza is not believed to pose any threat to humans.

In late May, the Florida Department of Agriculture confirmed a dozen cases of dog flu in Florida.

WCTV has reached out to the Department of Agriculture for more information on the Tallahassee case.

If an owner suspects their pet may have dog flu, they should call their veterinarian prior to going to the clinic in order to decrease the chances of spreading the virus to other animals.


By: Erin Lisch | WCTV Eyewitness News
May 31, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- We all want our pets happy and healthy, but the growing number of dog flu cases in Florida has many owners wondering how to keep their animals safe.

This strain of flu making the rounds the past two years, but just recently showing up in Florida affecting a dozen dogs as of Wednesday.

At the Tom Brown Dog Park, owners say their dogs are more than just pets.

Dog owner Caitlyn Stowers said, "We spend a lot time together."

Dog owner Eboney Murphy said, “They’re like my best friends."

Dog owner Alexis Gonzalez said, "He's definitely part of my family now."

That's why some owners are asking how to prevent their pets from getting the H3N2 canine influenza also known as the 'dog flu.'

Florida Department of Agriculture’s Jenn Meale said, "They believe that it originated from two possible dog shows. One in Perry, Georgia and the other in Deland, Florida."

Those dogs in stable condition, but vets saying this flu can spread quickly.

North Florida Animal Hospital Dr. Karis Dickey said, "Especially in boarding kennels, hospitals, dog parks, places like that."

Dogs can pass on this disease up to 4 weeks.

There are vaccines for the dog flu, while they're not 100 percent effective, they can lower your pet's chances of getting it (vaccines cost between $20-$40).

"Once that I see that it's spreading around I’ll possibly, probably will go get it," said Murphy.

"I’d probably get him a shot if that’s what veterinarians recommend, just to be a preventative for them. I'd rather be safe than sorry," said Gonzalez.

Common symptoms are sneezing, a runny nose and coughing, if not detected it can be fatal.

"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.

All valuable knowledge to keep your pets perky and on the move!

There are no reports of this in Leon County.

Cats can catch this virus too, although it's less common.

Humans are not susceptible to this type of flu.


By: Jake Stofan | Capitol News Service
May 31, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- The Florida Department of Agriculture say 12 cases of the highly contagious “dog flu” have been confirmed in Florida.

Most dogs have no immunity to the virus and few get vaccinated.

Pet owners are being urged to look for flu symptoms in their pets. Coughing, sneezing, and lethargic behavior can all be signs a dog is infected.

However, symptoms only show up in about 80% of dogs. To be safe, veterinarians 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,” says Dr. Karis Dickey of North Florida Animal Hospital.

The Florida Humane Society says it’s taking similar precautions.

Lisa Glunt of the Leon County Humane Society says, "Our guard is always up and we're always extra careful. I think this is just an opportunity for owners to kind of take the same awareness and take the same precautions that we would."

The virus has been circulating throughout the U.S. since 2015, but this is the first time it has been confirmed in Florida. Seven cases were reported Tuesday, with the number increasing to 12 by Wednesday.

"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," says Jenn Meale of the Florida Department of Agriculture.

Dog flu is not usually 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," says Dr. Dickey.

Animals can be vaccinated for the flu. Vaccinations are not 100% effective, but they can reduce a dog’s risk of contracting the virus and also reduce their chance of spreading it.

Vaccines can cost between $20 and $40.

Although less common, there has been reports of cats contracting the disease.


By: Associated Press
May 30, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Health officials have now confirmed a dozen cases of H3N2 canine influenza, or "dog flu", in Florida.

They say the flu was spread among animals that were at two dog shows.

According to Rossana Passaniti of the University of Florida, dogs testing positive for the flu were either at a Perry, Georgia dog show from May 19-21 or the Deland, Florida dog show the following weekend

Dogs may have also been exposed to the animals that had been at the shows.

There is no evidence that the virus infects people, and all the dogs being treated are in stable condition.

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services says the mortality rate for dog flu is low and most dogs recover at home without any complications.


By: WCTV Eyewitness News
May 30, 2017

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services announced Tuesday that the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine has confirmed seven cases of H3N2 canine influenza virus, also know as “dog flu.”

All of the dogs who have been diagnosed are being treated and are in stable condition. Six additional test results for the virus are pending.

“Dog flu” has been circulating throughout the U.S. since 2015, but this is the first time it has been confirmed in Florida. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services says the virus is highly contagious, but the mortality rate is low.

It also says there is no evidence that H3N2 canine influenza virus infects people.

Many dogs suffering from dog flu have a fever, decreased appetite, and lethargy during the first few days of illness. If an owner suspects dog flu, they should call their veterinarian prior to going to the clinic in order to decrease the chances of spreading the virus to other animals.

Most dogs recover at home without any complications, but some may require hospitalization.

Dog owners can have their veterinarians vaccinate their dogs against canine influenza viruses.

More information on canine influenza can be found here.



 
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