• 91 Weatherly Club Dr, Alabaster, AL 35007

    (205) 621-5755

  • Pneumonia/influenza

  • Canine influenza (CI), or dog flu, is a highly contagious respiratory infection of dogs that is caused by an influenza A virus.  Two clinical syndromes have been seen in dogs infected with the canine influenza virus—a mild form of the disease and a more severe form that is accompanied by pneumonia.

    Because this is still an emerging disease and dogs in the U.S. have not been exposed to it before, almost all dogs, regardless of breed or age, lack immunity to it and are susceptible to infection if exposed to the active virus. Virtually all dogs exposed to the virus become infected, and nearly 80% show clinical signs of disease, though most exhibit the mild form described above.

    Dogs that develop pneumonia based on clinical signs and chest radiographs often require hospitalization for intravenous fluids and parenteral antibiotics. Ideally, a tracheal wash or bronchoalveolar lavage for bacterial culture and antibiotic sensitivity testing should be performed to target the choice of antibiotic. For dogs in which cultures are not performed, empirical treatment with a broad spectrum combination of bactericidal antibiotics to provide 4‐quadrant (gram positive, gram negative, aerobic, anaerobic) coverage has worked well. For more severe cases of pneumonia, oxygen supplementation and nebulization with coupage have been very beneficial.