News Release

For immediate release: August 8, 2023

Contact: Michael Crusan

The Board of Animal Health changes guidance for dog owners as canine influenza cases slow

The Board of Animal Health is loosening its guidance around dog parks and other dog gatherings as canine influenza appears to be slowing in the state. The Board has confirmed 106 cases of canine influenza across 10 counties since the start of the outbreak in April. Case counts slowed through July and only one case has been reported since the middle of July.

“Be smart and be safe and you should definitely feel comfortable taking your pup out to play with other dogs,” said senior veterinarian in charge of companion animals, Dr. Veronica Bartsch. “Be smart by keeping your distance from dogs that appear sick, and if it’s your dog with the sniffles, you should keep them home for 30 days. Be safe by talking to your vet about the canine influenza vaccine and if it’s the right choice for your companion.”

The following recommendations remain in effect to help stop the spread of canine influenza and keep dogs healthy.

  • Keep sick dogs and dogs known to have had contact with infected dogs home and isolated from other animals for 30 days.
  • Contact your veterinarian as soon as possible if your dog is sick.
  • Avoid direct dog-to-dog contact with dogs showing signs of respiratory illness.
  • If your dog is sick, wash your hands and change clothes before interacting with other animals.

Beyond canine influenza, there are a couple other things for dog owners to pay attention to this time of year to keep their animals healthy. Make sure dogs have a steady supply of clean water and a place to rest in the shade during warm weather. If you do head to the beach to cool off, keep an eye out for Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs) when playing with your pup in open water. Find more information on HABs in the Harmful Algal Blooms Flyer. Find more disease prevention tips and information on the Board’s website or talk to your veterinarian today.