LOUISVILLE (WHAS) - Louisville Metro Animal Services (LMAS) and the Kentucky Humane Society (KHS) are joining together to provide flu vaccines against canine influenza. The vaccines will cost $10 for each shot.
These low-cost clinics will take place on Thursday, August 24 and September 7 from 4 to 7 pm at My Dog Eats First Headquarters at 2509 Portland Avenue.
For maximum effectiveness, two vaccines spaced about two to four weeks apart are necessary. Dogs that receive a shot on August 24 should return for a booster shot on September 7.
"Vaccinating is the best way to protect your own animals and other dogs in our community from dog flu," Ozzy Gibson, LMAS Director, said.
Canine influenza was first spotted in the Louisville area in early June. There have been several confirmed cases made by local veterinarians and boarding facilities. While the virus is very contagious to dogs, it does not affect people.
"We hope to vaccinate hundreds of dogs at these two clinics," Karen Konig, KHS Vice President for Animal Welfare, said. "Our goal is to ensure that every owner can afford to vaccinate and protect their pets."
Nearly every dog that encounters the virus becomes infected and up to 80% of infected dogs develop flu-like symptoms, including persistent coughing, sneezing, nasal or eye discharge, lethargy, reduced appetite, and fever. Most dogs recover within two to three weeks.
Any dogs showing symptoms should be isolated. It is best to avoid areas where dogs gather until dogs are fully vaccinated.