BREAKING NEWS! Unprecedented Dog Flu H3N2 Outbreak In Minnesota, USA - Over 200 Dogs Infected And Counting!
: The Animal Humane Society (AHS) in Minnesota has been grappling with an unprecedented outbreak of canine influenza H3N2 for two weeks now, causing alarm among pet owners and leading to the closure of three busy facilities. The outbreak has affected nearly 200 dogs housed in shelters in Golden Valley, Coon Rapids, and Woodbury, and is considered "unprecedented" due to the large number of animals infected.
Seven of the affected animals had to be euthanized, as they were deemed too sick to make a full recovery. The remaining dogs are undergoing a 30-day quarantine, as mandated by the State Board of Animal Health. AHS veterinary staff are working tirelessly to ensure the health and well-being of the dogs in their care while preventing the highly contagious virus from spreading to the general public.
So far there has been no reports of any humans contracting the virus from dogs in the current outbreak.
The situation has been further complicated by a shortage of the H3N2 canine influenza vaccine. Increased demand due to the outbreak has created a significant backlog, and the vaccine manufacturer, Merck, has confirmed that their product, Nobivac, is in short supply. As a result, many veterinary clinics have the vaccine on backorder.
To reopen the affected facilities, the AHS must meet three criteria: wait 30 days past the last dog showing symptoms, pass a check by the Board of Animal Health, and ensure the health and safety of the animals for both the state and potential adopters. The financial impact on the AHS has been significant, with lost revenue from adoptions, medical care, and training classes, as well as additional costs for animal care and facility cleaning and sterilization.
The Minnesota Board of Animal Health has now confirmed that the highly contagious H3N2 strain of canine influenza is responsible for the outbreak. This strain is more virulent and spreads more easily than the H3N8 strain, with infected dogs shedding the virus for up to 28 days. While most dogs recover in a few weeks, severe cases can progress to pneumonia.
As the initial outbreak seemed to be winding down, another dog in the community tested positive for canine influenza, sparking concerns that the virus may have spread beyond the AHS shelters according to local Dog Flu
news coverages. The Board of Animal Health is conducting an investigation to determine if there is a connection to the AHS cases or if this is the result of community spread.
In light of the ongoing outbreak, veterinarians are urging pet owners to take extra precautions when taking their dogs to public places like dog parks, daycares, and boarding facilities. Pet owners should also closely monitor their dogs for signs of respiratory disease and consult with their veterinarians about vaccination options and preventative measures.
The Animal Humane Society relies on donations to continue providing care for the affected animals and has launched a fundraising campaign to help cover the costs of the outbreak. A number of large donors have agreed to match funds up to $50,000.
As the situation unfolds, it is crucial for pet owners to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to protect their furry com
panions from this unprecedented H3N2 canine influenza outbreak in Minnesota.
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