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Old 05-01-2014, 12:29 PM
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Default Canine influenza?

Apparently Canine Influenza (H3N8 virus) is a big thing down here. I have never heard of it, but while doing my multiple interviews saw signs and such advertising the vaccine for it. According to a vet tech I spoke with, they had a bad outbreak awhile back that completely shut down the humane society and they were seeing a LOT of ill dogs.

Anybody know anything about it? Would it be worth vaccinating for? Is it something that needs to be boostered annually, or would it trigger enough of an immune response that if the dog were exposed to the virus at a later point, it would still have memory cells to begin fighting the infection?

I was reading here and it looks like it doesn't 100% prevent the flu, but lessons the symptoms.

I don't vaccinate for bordetella on the theory that if the dogs were to contract it, they would be healthy enough to put up a good fight themselves/with the help of some mild medication. Is this Canine Influenza in a similar category, or is it more serious?

I'm not really worried about Abrams so much (he's young and healthy), but with Cynder and her underlying megaesophagus, it concerns me. She's already at risk for pneumonia due to possible aspiration, really don't need to add to the risk.

Thoughts?
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Old 05-01-2014, 12:52 PM
release the hounds release the hounds is offline
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I think they took advantage of humans fear of the "flu" and developed a vaccine to capitalize in the canine market too. but I'm just a crazy. But ask yourself why you've never heard of it before? how many dogs do you know that have had the "flu"? are influenza viruses newly evolved? did canine one's just appear? hence the new vaccine? I know a lot of dog people and they only time i hear about the canine flu is on the internet and in a vets office via marketing materials.

anyway, not sure how the canine one works, I know in humans they offer up some protection for 6 months to a year, come claims show up to 3 years for that exact strain only, but 6 -18 months is the more accepted belief right now. Make of it what you will.
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Old 05-01-2014, 01:01 PM
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I had never heard of it either.... Until I started making reservations for one of our vacations and all the daycares in that area required it. So, now my dogs have it and my local vet didn't even have a spot for it in his computer system. HaHa.

I can't tell you much about the vaccine or the virus honestly and I don't know how similar it is to the way the human Flu works. I know it's required yearly to be considered "up-to-date." And I've only seen the one strain advertised on the vaccine... With the human flu shot they put several strains in one vaccine bc who knows which one will really come around and it's always different. That alone makes me not so inclined to give it, except for the times I need to put the dogs in day care.
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Old 05-01-2014, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
I think they took advantage of humans fear of the "flu" and developed a vaccine to capitalize in the canine market too. but I'm just a crazy. But ask yourself why you've never heard of it before? how many dogs do you know that have had the "flu"? are influenza viruses newly evolved? did canine one's just appear? hence the new vaccine? I know a lot of dog people and they only time i hear about the canine flu is on the internet and in a vets office via marketing materials.

anyway, not sure how the canine one works, I know in humans they offer up some protection for 6 months to a year, come claims show up to 3 years for that exact strain only, but 6 -18 months is the more accepted belief right now. Make of it what you will.
I just moved down south, where it is more of an issue. Up in Indiana, it wasn't even a blip on our radar. LOL

The flu virus that is affecting the dogs is new; ie, I think 2006 was the first reported case, or something to that effect. It was a strain prior only seen in horses, and then it mutated and jumped to dogs.

From my understanding, it isn't a "multi-virus" vaccine, because, well, there is only one virus.

Quote:
Originally Posted by xpaeanx View Post
I had never heard of it either.... Until I started making reservations for one of our vacations and all the daycares in that area required it. So, now my dogs have it and my local vet didn't even have a spot for it in his computer system. HaHa.

I can't tell you much about the vaccine or the virus honestly and I don't know how similar it is to the way the human Flu works. I know it's required yearly to be considered "up-to-date." And I've only seen the one strain advertised on the vaccine... With the human flu shot they put several strains in one vaccine bc who knows which one will really come around and it's always different. That alone makes me not so inclined to give it, except for the times I need to put the dogs in day care.
I'm pretty sure my dogs are low risk...the only exposure they have to other dogs is when we go to the beach, and that may only be twice a month. I'm sure I'll have to vaccinate for it if I ever board them, though.
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Old 05-01-2014, 05:56 PM
release the hounds release the hounds is offline
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why is canine influenza worse where it is warmer? if there is only one strain, why the numbered designation? Does that seem consistent with other viruses out in the wild? Is the virus new, or just the fact they actually tried to isolate that is new? They tried to tell us B. burgdorferi was new at one point too. Turns out it's been around for thousands of years at least.
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:26 PM
crazedACD crazedACD is offline
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There is a local service dog organization that takes in shelter dogs and trains them into SDs. I heard that they got in a dog that had Canine Influenza, and it made many of their dogs sick. Now they require every dog on the property to be vaccinated for it.

BUT. While I was doing research on it, the SD organization seems to promote the vaccine (and vice versa), so I'm not sure how propaganda-y it is. I'm a little wary that it is a clever campaign by Merck.
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:36 PM
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I would assume a number designation based solely on the fact that it's a type of flu virus. Regardless of whether it's the only canine one, it's still a flu and needs to be sorted and filed. Or maybe there are other canine flus, but this particular strain is the only one that solicits bad symptoms and is therefore the only one included in the vaccine. Numbering viruses of the same family makes things easier for file keeping & information sharing.

I only brought up the one strain thing bc of how quickly the flu virus mutates in humans. Plus there are usually a few flu viruses circulating at any given time... One may be the worst, but you could catch one of the others as well.
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
why is canine influenza worse where it is warmer? if there is only one strain, why the numbered designation? Does that seem consistent with other viruses out in the wild? Is the virus new, or just the fact they actually tried to isolate that is new? They tried to tell us B. burgdorferi was new at one point too. Turns out it's been around for thousands of years at least.
The first documented case was seen at a Greyhound track down south. I imagine it's prevalent down here purely because of the location to the initial outbreak. Honestly, I don't know.

As for the one strain thing, It's numbered because it is an influenza virus. Like was said...it's for documentation. Kind of like H1N1. This is H3N8.

I believe it is a viable illness that affects dogs....I just wasn't sure how easy it was to overcome versus trying to prevent.
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Old 05-01-2014, 06:57 PM
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It's super regional. We really don't see it up here, so I don't have any experience with the vaccine, sorry.

The one thing I know about it is that uncommonly, it can progress SUPER fast to a really nasty, fulminant pneumonia. When the first outbreaks happened several years ago it was like the sky was falling because of these really, really bad cases, and now it seems to have fallen back to the back burner in areas of the country where it isn't common.
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Old 05-01-2014, 07:33 PM
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I personally feel the vaccine is still too 'new' to really be trusted. It's not something I would really want to give.

This is a quote from Dr.Schultz...
Quote:
Canine influenza virus jumped from horses to dogs in 2004, but Dr. Schultz said there was never any risk that influenza would become the next canine parvovirus epidemic. “Parvo is extremely environmentally stable, it’s impossible to get rid of, it lives in the soil for at least a year or more, and remains infectious. Canine influenza is dead about the moment it comes out of the dog,” so it seems to be most prevalent at Greyhound
tracks, in shelters, and in some canine day cares or kennels.
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