Posted Sept. 15, 2009
The AVMA has updated its backgrounder on canine influenza in light of the continuing spread of the disease and the release of the first vaccine.
According to the backgrounder, canine influenza emerged in racing Greyhounds between 2004 and 2005. The disease has become endemic in Florida, Colorado, and the New York City region. The disease also may become endemic in Pittsburgh.
As of Oct. 2, 2008, the Animal Health Diagnostic Center at Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine had confirmed 1,079 cases of canine influenza. The center has confirmed one or more cases of canine influenza in 28 states. The AVMA backgrounder now provides a link to the center's Web page on canine influenza—which in turn provides information on disease detection and sample collection, along with current disease statistics.
The AVMA backgrounder includes information on the new vaccine for canine influenza virus. In May 2009, the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved licensure of the vaccine, developed by Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health. The canine influenza vaccine is a noncore vaccine. It is primarily for dogs at risk of exposure to the canine influenza virus, such as dogs that participate in activities with many other dogs or that are housed in communal facilities, particularly where the virus is prevalent.
The AVMA backgrounder on canine influenza provides additional details about the causative agent, natural distribution, transmission, clinical signs, diagnosis, treatment, morbidity and mortality rates, and prevention and control. The document and other resources on canine influenza are available here.
Correction: The original version of this article inaccurately stated that canine influenza may become endemic in Lexington, Ky.