Canine Influenza Virus (Canine Flu)

Many local boarding kennels are requiring that their quests be vaccinated for the canine influenza virus. Dog owners are beginning to become educated about this disease, and are getting their pets up to date. We would like to give you a little information about the flu.

Canine influenza is a newly emerging infectious disease caused by a flu virus. The strain is known as H3N8 and it is highly contagious between dogs. It is spread by direct contact, sneezing or coughing, or through contaminated surfaces.

Symptoms of canine influenza include fever, persistent cough, nasal discharge, lethargy, and loss of appetite. In about 20% of dogs more serious signs may occur like high-grade fever and pneumonia, however most dogs will only get a mild form of the disease.

Diagnosing canine influenza can be difficult. It has symptoms similar to other, more common respiratory diseases such as kennel cough. We would like owners to begin suspecting the disease before symptoms become severe or last an unusually long time. Some dogs may need more aggressive therapy, but like most viruses, canine influenza should eventually run it’s course.

The best way to avoid canine influenza is to get your dog vaccinated. The first vaccine should be boostered within two to four weeks, followed by an annual revaccination. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us. Your veterinarian is the best person to answer your questions. You can also check out this website,

Laser Therapy Study

A recent study conducted by the University of Florida found that using a therapeutic laser on dogs suffering from paralysis, caused by Intervertebral disc disease, helps them recover more rapidly from surgery when compared to dogs not treated with a laser.

Researchers used a class 3B laser (hey that’s what we use at the clinic) to treat 17 post-op dogs in a year-long study, and compared the results to 17 control dogs. “We found that dogs receiving laser therapy were walking a full week before the patients that didn’t receive the treatments,” reported Dr. Tom Shubert, who is a professor of small animal neurology at UF’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

At Harris Parkway Animal Hospital, we been using our class 3B laser for two years to treat some of the following conditions
1. Disc injuries
2. Acute or chronic joint pain
3. Chronic non-healing wounds
4. Chronic non-healing wounds
5. Post-surgical pain
6. Bone fractures
7. Muscle strains and tendons
8. Tendon and Ligament injuries

As one of the modalities that we use in our rehabilitation practice (Ft Worth Animal Rehabilitation), laser therapy has proven to be very successful in treating inflammatory and painful problems.

Buddy just had surgery

Just days after my last post about Buddy and his pal Scarlett, Buddy’s owners noticed that he couldn’t see. They called me, late, a few evenings ago, and we decided that he had to visit the eye doctor asap. The next morning, Buddy was in surgery to have his detached retina repaired with laser surgery. He is back home and, for now, our specialist feels that Buddy should regain his eyesight. Go Buddy.

Buddy and his pal Scarlett

I got to see two of my favorites tonight. Buddy and Scarlet. What a special story they have. They were strays roaming the streets together. We don’t know when they hooked up or how long they wandered the streets. One day Buddy, the basset, was hit by a car, twice. He was gravely injured with a head injury, and down in the street. Scarlet sat down and refused to leave him.

People began to stop for the injured dog. A good samaritan got Buddy into her car and rushed him to her vet. She couldn’t bear to separate the two dogs so Scarlet was invited into her car as well. Buddy spent some time in the hospital, but recovered. The two pals stayed together through the entire ordeal.

When it came time to find the dogs a forever home, they were adopted by the same person. They just couldn’t be separated after all they had been through together. Buddy developed epilepsy and glaucoma, and both could easily have been caused by his head injuries. By this time they had become our patients. We were able to get his seizures under control, and our local ophthalmologist removed his left eye and replaced it with a prosthetic. We are watching his right eye (the good one) for changes that would indicate he is having problems with it.

Actually, Buddy and Scarlet live in my neighborhood, and I love watching them go for walks with their new family. Thanks to all involved in saving and giving these two a great life.