Two dogs in Texas have been diagnosed with canine influenza, a virus that infects most dogs exposed to it but is rarely fatal, according to a report from the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory.
The Texas A&M lab confirmed the strain of influenza as H3N2, the same one identified in a recent outbreak in Florida and Georgia. The report, which can be read in full here, did not specify where in Texas the virus had been found.
“Virtually all dogs exposed become infected with the virus,” the report said.
About 80 percent of infected dogs show symptoms, which include high fever, loss of appetite, nasal discharge and lethargy.
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The virus can be spread from dog to dog or from contact with contaminated items, such as bowls and leashes, according to the American Kennel Club (AKC), which posted a notice about the virus last month.
The AKC recommended available vaccinations — for both the H3N2 strain and a second strain, H3N8 — as the best way to prevent the virus. Dog owners should keep infected animals isolated for up to 30 days after symptoms appear, the AKC notice said.