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I Dig My Dog Health Update
September 9, 2021
I spoke with Dr. Karen Ehnert, the head Veterinarian of LA COUNTY yesterday.
She gave me this update: We have a county/state wide outbreak of H3N2 influenza. It originally came into Chicago in 2015, with rescue dogs imported from China and South Korea. In 2021, it came in from Asia into Los Angeles through a rescue/ boarding facility on the west side. They were isolated, but it jumped from the rescue dog side to the boarding dog side through an air vent. One of those rescue dogs then went to a Santa Clarita facility. It was not symptomatic, but still shedding the virus. It made some dogs in that environment sick. It has since spread through various points of contact in veterinarian offices, grooming shops, dog parks, daycares etc. (See link below for more information from LA County.)
And the rest as they say… is the present.
What we thought initially was a few cases of mild kennel cough, last week rapidly turned into a cascading outbreak of H3N2 Influenza. In general, symptoms start with the flu and then create an opening for Bordatella Bronchoseptica or Mycoplasma bacterias to get into the lungs and cause potential pneumonia. Influenza and Kennel Cough separately can present fairly mild symptoms. Paired together, it creates a very serious health situation, and has made dogs very sick.
We had some PCR tests come back positive for just H3N2 influenza. Some PCR tests returned back positive only for Mycoplasma. This is a Bordatella bacteria strain of kennel cough with no known vaccine. Some PCR tests have come back positive for both.
Symptoms in dogs have varied from mild to extremely sick, depending on what combination they had.
We know there has been a recent Leptospirosis outbreak on the west side. We have not yet seen this. Previously, we have never had a case of reported Leptospirosis or Canine Influenza at IDMD in 19 years. These viruses have been historically rare in these parts, so these vaccines have not been part of most veterinarians’ core protocols.
Our world has changed, and so we must adapt with it.
If your dog has not had them, you should get Leptospirosis and Canine Influenza vaccines as soon as possible. Talk to your veterinarian.
If you suspect or have proof they have been infected with Canine Influenza, you should wait 21 days from the first day of symptoms to get the vaccine. The virus continues to shed for 28 days so precautions need to be taken to not spread it again in this time frame.
We should have this out of our facility at IDMD soon, when the last of our guests, who arrived prior to the outbreak, go home.
We take this latest health scare seriously. We didn’t know what we were dealing with as it was unfolding, and I’m glad to provide you with some answers now.
I know this has rocked all of you to watch your dogs go through this illness. It has caused much suffering, sleepless nights, and great financial expense. Some of you have expressed that you hold IDMD responsible. I want you to know this has been an unprecedented event in our business, and I’m so sorry this happened. I sincerely hope your dogs are getting on the other side of this. My dogs got it too, and I’ve never been so relieved to see their light, (and their quirky habits!) slowly return.
We are currently closed for our primary services. The store remains open and we are taking phone calls to answer your questions, and for future reservations.
We are sanitizing from top to bottom, inside and out. The virus may persist for approximately 2 days in the environment. We will re-open only when we can ensure this has been eradicated from our facility.
Nothing is more important to us than doing our due diligence in keeping our guests safe. We have been privileged for many years now, to care for your dogs as though they were our own. We all want the same thing, to protect our pets and provide a safe and healthy environment when you need to leave them in someone else’s care.
Going forward, all dogs will be required to have both Leptospirosis and Canine Influenza vaccines. It’s a two step process, so schedule that with your vet now!
Bordatella needs to be done every 6 months. For those of you who get an annual injectable Bordatella, there will be no exceptions. Work that out with your vet. If your dog plays with other dogs or gets groomed, Bordatella should be given every 6 months.
Our goal is to create a tightly controlled bubble where you can have the confidence knowing that your pets are safeguarded against these viruses in the future. We will continue to scrutinize and review all of our daily protocols. Please feel free to contact me personally if you have any questions. We are currently reaching out to all of you who may have been affected to see how you are all doing. Thank you for your patience while we have tried to get some answers for you.
I want to send a massive thank you to Dr. Stan Avezov, and his incredible staff, at Pasadena Pets, for their dedication and swift attention in seeing patients as quickly as they could. We all know how challenging it has been this year to get even a routine vet appointment. Emergency rooms are overflowing. Even with an epidemic brewing, Dr. Stan made room to connect with dog parents and get dogs treated. I’m eternally grateful. Pasadena Pets is currently holding a shot clinic on Sundays to specifically address the urgency of getting the Lepto and Influenza vaccines done. Please contact them to schedule an appointment.
If we’ve learned anything this year, it is to get vaccinated!!
Thank you for listening. Thank you for your continued support. Stay well. We hope to see all of you again soon.
Lundy and the IDMD Crew
Due to Health Emergency, Hours are subject to change. Please call 626-844-7877or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday - Friday: 7:00 am - 6:00pm
Saturday: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sunday: 11:30 am - 5:00 pm
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I Dig My Dog is a comprehensive cage-free boarding, daycare, grooming and training facility, designed to provide the highest quality care for your best friend.
Our guests stay with us for a variety of reasons and for any length of time, from a few hours to a few months. We are dedicated to a superior quality of care and cleanliness throughout our 32,000 square-foot facility -- from our indoor and outdoor play areas to our bone-shaped swimming pool.
Come visit us to see our happy dogs at play!