Updated December 9, 2022
Hello Cedar Ridge Family,
We wanted to make sure that you are aware that in addition to the surge of upper respiratory illness cases we have been seeing in dogs for the last few months, we have a current outbreak of Canine Influenza in Asheville. The number of dogs showing upper respiratory symptoms such as coughing, discharge from eyes or nose, repetitive sneezing and lethargy is approaching an epidemic level. Some of these pets have also presented with fever and some have had pneumonia seen on x-rays of the lungs.
Why are we concerned?
Upper respiratory infections and Canine Influenza specifically can cause serious illness in all dogs – even those that are otherwise young and healthy.
Who is at risk?
Our highest risk patients are those that have spent time in boarding facilities, grooming facilities, dog parks, and other group dog situations, but we have seen these symptoms in dogs that have no significant history of exposure to other dog. Some have only come into contact with other dogs while on walks. This leads to a concern that dogs are being exposed doing normal dog activities around other dogs that are shedding the disease without any physical signs or symptoms.
What can I expect if I need my pet evaluated for respiratory symptoms?
Please be understanding with our staff as we evaluate these patients with respiratory symptoms. We will be examining these pets outside of the hospital when at all possible to help us minimize spread to other dogs. You will be asked to wait in your car for the duration of the visit or at least until we can safely escort you and your dog directly to an exam room. Our staff may be in protective clothing (gowns, masks, gloves) to minimize transmission by our staff to other pets. Do not allow your pet to have any contact with other pets or pet parents in the parking lot. If your pet needs a potty break then walk them far away from other animals. The strip of grass between our clinic and the Dunkin Donuts store is a good location. Please remember that we are on a busy road and you should have your dog on a leash at all times when out of the car. We will not be able to accommodate a drop off appointment for these sick visits so please plan appropriately and be patient as it may take longer to work in your pet if the schedule is full.
What do we recommend?
We recommend that all dogs with exposure to any other dogs be fully vaccinated for Canine Influenza and Bordetella so we provide as much protection against upper respiratory disease as possible. Please call us to check on your dog’s vaccine status and schedule any needed boosters.
The Doctors of Cedar Ridge Animal Hospital