Veterinarians on 'high alert' as reports of dog flu cases spread

Ana Rivera Image
Wednesday, June 30, 2021
Veterinarians on 'high alert' as reports of dog flu cases spread
Make sure your furry friend is up-to-date on their vaccines.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Triangle area veterinarians are on high alert for dog flu.

Veterinarians tell ABC11 they are keeping a close eye on two strains of canine flu. Both strains can cause coughing, runny eyes, respiratory issues and complications that could ultimately lead to death.

Keeping your dog safe from canine flu involves many of the same things you've been doing to keep yourself safe from COVID-19 or the seasonal flu.

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"It is very, very similar to coronavirus. Which made it very easy to treat the dogs. It's a six foot radius. How it sheds is through water droplets," said Dr. Page Wages with Care First Animal Hospital.

Scottie Wynne's dog Finn is a dog park regular, but Wynne said he's going to be extra careful in the coming weeks.

"If I saw anything that looked like a flu symptom, yeah, I'd be in touch with my vet," Wynne said.

Dr. Wages says there's one confirmed case of dog flu in Winston-Salem and an outbreak at a kennel in Florida. But it's the timing that has her concerned, which is very similar to when the Triangle saw its most recent outbreak of canine flu.

"We're headed into a huge holiday weekend with Fourth of July," Wages said.

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Kennel facilities are completely booked. Wages said dog owners will want to make sure their pets are fully up-to-date on vaccines, including the flu shot, before boarding them.

Finn is staying home this weekend but to stay safe, and Wynne's daily plans may have to change a bit too.

"I might switch to walking them more instead of going to the dog park as much," Wynne said.