Canine Influenza Health Alert

We have just been alerted by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health that a dog imported from China has brought the H3N2 strain of Canine Influenza to Los Angeles. This is a highly contagious and, for some dogs, potentially serious respiratory infection. This virus is a different strain from the Canine Influenza we have seen in California over the last decade (H3N8).

Unfortunately being vaccinated for one type does not protect against the other type. Fortunately Newport Harbor Animal Hospital now has a vaccine that contains both strains of Canine Influenza viruses. Because the new strain will be added to the vaccine, when your pet is due for their canine influenza vaccine, we will vaccinate with the new bivalent (2 strain) vaccine. This will need to be boostered 3 weeks after the first vaccine to protect against the new strain.

While we understand this involves another trip to the see us, we want to ensure we are offering you the best medicine available for your dog.

Dogs that board at Newport Harbor Animal Hospital will need to vaccinated against the new strain before further boarding. If your pet received a Canine Influenza vaccine before April 12, 2017, we will require they receive the new bivalent Canine Influenza vaccine in-order to board at our facility. This is a very safe vaccine with few reported side effects, so there is little risk to your dog in updating the vaccine before it is due.

You may also want to consider updating your dog’s Influenza vaccine with the new bivalent vaccine if they visit the dog park, dog beach, go to pet stores, live in apartment complexes with many other dogs, or if they go to boarding or daycare facilities. If you have a puppy, elderly or pregnant dog or a dog that is immunocompromised, you should take extra precautions.

Chances are, if your dog is exposed to CIV H3N2, he or she may become infected. If you notice coughing, sneezing, lethargy, fever, or discharge from the eyes or nose, please contact Newport Harbor Animal Hospital immediately and keep your dog away from other dogs to prevent transmission.

If you have any questions about the new strain of Canine Influenza, the new vaccine, or to schedule an appointment to have your dog’s Influenza vaccine updated, please call our hospital at (949) 631-1030.

 

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