There is currently an outbreak of canine influenza going on in the South Bay. We do not yet have any cases to report to the Veterinary Medical Association in San Francisco. The following information has been provided by Dr. Valerie Brons:
In the South Bay over 50 coughing dogs have been seen at two emergency clinics in the past week; so far at least three of their patients have tested positive for canine influenza H3N2.
A canine respiratory panel (that specifically tests for H3N8 and H3N2) is recommended if a dog is coughing and/or has a fever. There can be some false negatives on this test.
It is recommended to vaccinate unaffected dogs who will be exposed to other dogs (boarding, shows, dog park, grooming, or if they have been exposed to any dog that is coughing etc.) with the new H3N2/H3N8 influenza vaccine. This is a series of 2 vaccines given 3 weeks apart. If the dog is already coughing, it is too late for the vaccine to be effective.
Influenza-infected dogs are thought to have immunity for 2 years once they have recovered.
For any affected dogs treatment is symptomatic since this is a viral infection, however bacterial co-infection and pneumonia is possible and bloodwork and x-rays are recommended in addition to the respiratory panel. An antibiotic may or may not be recommended on a case by case basis.
Testing is available through multiple laboratories and can take 3-14 days for results depending on the specific test and lab.
The good news is, so far, treated cases have not been fatal, and overall this virus has high morbidity low mortality.
Updated: January 12, 2018