A warning for dog owners: a new strain of canine influenza has made its way to Georgia. It’s already killed at least six dogs in the Midwest.
It’s called H3N2. 55 cases have been confirmed in Georgia, most in the Atlanta area. Fulton County has 39 cases alone.
Veterinarian Dr. Frederick Blackmar says pet owners should keep pets away from dogs they don’t know, and places where that is likely to happen, the groomer, kennels, dog parks.
“All it takes is one dog traveling to a new area because this is a very contagious virus,” said Dr. Blackmar.
Canine Influenza spreads sneezing and coughing. For most dogs, the virus will run its course in two to three weeks but older dogs, puppies, and dogs will other illnesses will have a harder time fighting this virus.
The symptoms are pretty similar to kennel cough, but more severe. They include coughing, lethargy, a loss of appetite, and high fever.
Cases have popped up in Macon as well. The new H3N2 strain is responsible for an outbreak in the Midwest where more than 1,500 dogs were diagnosed. 6 of them died.