Dog Flu- is it a real thing?
With so much human flu flying around at the moment we tend to forget that our canine friends can suffer from their own varieties too. Similar to the strain of flu found in horses, canine flu is a virus which can be caught much like human flu. It is very easy to spot in dogs with one of the main symptoms being breathlessness.
If your dog is suffering from an unknown illness, be sure to check out the below symptoms, as well as breathlessness there are a few other distinctive signs which could determine whether your pooch is suffering from the dreaded flu.
- Runny nose
- Loss of appetite
- Respiratory infection
Do not hesitate in taking your dog to the vets if they are displaying any of these symptoms. Make sure you keep other dogs in the house away from the dog suffering with flu as it is very contagious. Anything which the dogs share such as water bowls, toys and bedding must be washed to ensure that the virus is not passed on.
Make sure your poorly dog has a nice quiet area with plenty of water, vets will probably prescribe a course of antibiotics, but just like human flu there isn’t a known cure as yet. The virus will pass with time, as long as your dog is getting plenty of fluids, rest and finish the course of their antibiotics correctly they should recover with no problems.
- It is thought that wild birds spread the disease through their droppings, and then dogs like to go and pick them up; stopping your dog from this can reduce the risk of your dog catching the virus.
- Avoid walking in parks where large numbers of dogs go
- Always wash your hands after stroking your dog
- Be sure to check places where you take your dog are properly ventilated and have good hygiene levels
- Make sure your dog always has a clean, fresh supply of water
There is a vaccination for canine flu and many dogs that are considered a high risk are given it. Breeds with squashed faces are the most likely to get it, for example pugs, French bulldogs and English bulldogs. If your dogs are going into kennels it is a good idea to think about getting them vaccinated.