Essentials PetCare News

Canine Influenza Outbreak

Dog flu, caused by the canine influenza virus (CIV), occurs year-round and can affect dogs of any breed, age, sex or health status. Almost all dogs exposed to the virus become infected, with 80 percent of those infected developing flu-like illness. Although CIV is highly contagious, it does not transfer to people.

The canine influenza virus travels from infected dogs to uninfected dogs through:

  • Direct contact
  • Coughing, barking and sneezing
  • Contaminated objects such as clothing, kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars and leashes
  • People handling or moving between infected and uninfected dogs

Symptoms range from mild to severe and include:

  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Nasal or eye discharge
  • Lethargy
  • Reduced appetite
  • Fever

Please seek veterinary care if you believe your dog has been exposed to influenza or you are noticing any of the above symptoms. The best care for Canine Influenza is preventative care. Visit our services page for pricing on our Canine Influenza vaccine packages.

Essentials PetCare recommends heartworm tests for dogs every six months

The Companion Animal Parasite Council (CAPC) advises twice-a-year testing for dogs living in areas known to have an abundance of mosquitos and active heartworm disease. If your dog has missed any doses of prevention, it is especially important to test regularly. Essentials PetCare will re-test in six months because heartworms must be approximately seven months old before an infection can be diagnosed. Catching heartworm disease early is much safer for pets and easier to treat.

Signs of heartworm disease may include:


Mild persistent cough

Decreased appetite

Weight loss

Please contact us at Essentials PetCare if you are noticing any of the above symptoms or if you have any questions or concerns. Visit our services page to view options and pricing for heartworm tests.