Sabal Chase Animal Clinic

Sabal Chase Animal Clinic
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Wednesday, February 17, 2016

There's A New Flu In Town!

There’s A New Flu In Town!

Early last spring, a new canine influenza virus known as H3N2 arrived in the United States from either China or South Korea.  It swept quickly through the Chicago area, sickening over 1,000 dogs.  By July, the virus had spread as far south as Atlanta, and as snowbirds begin to arrive in Florida, it is expected to become a problem here as well.  In recent weeks, we have seen three suspected cases in our clinic.  

The “flu shot” our pets have been receiving for the past few years is only effective against the strain known as H3N8.  This vaccine provides no protection against the new virus. An additional vaccine that protects against H3N2 has recently become available.  While it might be inconvenient to add yet another vet visit to your schedule, we are strongly recommending that dog owners take this step to protect their pets.  Dogs infected with H3N2 often develop pneumonia, and are susceptible to serious secondary infections.  We have seen no complications or side effects from the vaccine.  Please consider doing your part to stop the spread of this disease by vaccinating your dog as soon as possible.
Zohan was very brave!

Monday, February 1, 2016

Meet Gaston, Our February Pet Of The Month!

This February, we are honoring Gaston with the title of Pet Of The Month.  Gaston is a six-month-old French Bulldog with the fighting spirit of a champion!  Shortly after arriving in his new home, Gaston began showing signs of an upper respiratory illness.   Diagnostics confirmed our worst fears - he was suffering from distemper.  Additionally, his compromised immune system allowed a secondary virus to take hold.  While we did not confirm our suspicions by ordering a test that would not change our treatment plan, we were fairly certain it was the “new dog flu”, otherwise known as H3N2.

Thankfully, Gaston had already received some of his puppy shots - including the crucial distemper vaccine.  Additionally, there is now a new, and extremely effective vaccine against H3N2.  With lots of diligent supportive care from his awesome mom and dad, Gaston is now the picture of perfect health!

It’s important to note that Gaston came from a reputable, licensed breeder who did everything by the book.  These viruses are not “puppy mill issues”.  Disease does not discriminate.  Puppies are not fully protected until their entire series of shots is complete.  If you are unsure of your pet’s vaccine status, or if he hasn’t been vaccinated against “the new flu,” call us to find out more.

In the meantime, tell all your friends, Gaston! You’re our Pet of the Month!