Veterinary Division

New Development
Signs of canine influenza

The signs of canine flu are cough, runny nose and fever and are similar to other respiratory problems. Other signs can include lethargy, eye discharge, reduced appetite and low-grade fever. Most dogs recover within two to three weeks. However, secondary bacterial infections can develop, and may cause more severe illness and pneumonia. Anyone with concerns about their pet’s health, or whose pet is showing signs of canine influenza, should contact their veterinarian.

The virus is highly contagious and easily spread from infected dogs to other dogs through direct contact, nasal secretions (through coughing and sneezing), contaminated objects (kennel surfaces, food and water bowls, collars and leashes), and people moving between infected and uninfected dogs.

There is a canine flu vaccination, but it may not be effective against all strains. Pet owners should contact their veterinarian to determine if vaccination is advisable.

Human Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control, there is no evidence of transmission of canine influenza viruses from dogs to people and there has not been a reported case of human infection with  canine influenza. Also, this strain of influenza is different from avian influenza that has caused the deaths of birds in the Midwest.

Resources for pet owners

Boarding and Shelters

Boarding and shelter facilities should review their current intake, isolation, veterinary care, monitoring and sanitation protocols with their facility veterinarian to be sure they are taking adequate measures to control the spread of this virus.

Resources for Shelters & Boarding facilities

Resources for Veterinarians

Canine influenza is not a reportable disease, though veterinarians are encouraged to report cases to AWS so the Section can monitor the situation.

Phone: 919-707-3280


Veterinary Division Animal Welfare Section, R. Douglas Meckes, DVM, State Veterinarian
Mailing Address:1030 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1030
Physical Address: 2 W. Edenton Street, Raleigh, NC 27601
Phone: (919) 707-3280; FAX: (919) 733-6431