Flu vaccine shortage for dogs impacting local pet clinics

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Wednesday, December 14, 2022
Flu vaccine shortage for dogs impacting local pet clinics
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Local pet clinics are seeing the impacts of the national shortage of dog flu vaccines.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Local pet clinics are seeing the impacts of the national shortage of dog flu vaccines.

This supply issue is nothing new for the Valley Animal Center in Fresno.

The center has been seeing a shortage of Canine influenza or flu shots for months. At times being backed up for up to 2-3 months.

The national supply chain issue has impacted hundreds of pet owners who are waiting to vaccinate their dogs against the contagious respiratory disease.

Ruben Cantu works at the animal center. Their waiting list is about 100 people.

"I don't want to say frustrating but it can be when we have to tell our clients, you know, unfortunately, I don't have this vaccination for you. Because they're doing it for the love and safety of their pet and that's I think what's most important in this conversation" says Ruben.

The Valley Animal Center sees about five cases of Canine Influenza each year.

Astacia Wright is the lead surgical technician at the Valley Animal Center, she anticipates dog flu cases to rise because of the shortage.

"It is a treatable virus. Usually with supplemental treatments like IV fluids, antivirals it's pretty easy to clear up. But it is something that we do have to be concerned about." Astacia explains.

The center currently has a limited amount of flu vaccines.

On average dog owners wait at least one month before they can vaccinate their pets.

For this reason, the center has had to be lenient on their dog park vaccine requirement

"And we have members that are very diligent about having that done. And we do have clients that won't be interested in coming to the park until their dog is fully up to date themselves. And that's just for the protection of their own pet," Ruben says.

Pet owners can prevent their furry friends from catching the flu by limiting time spent with other dogs and making sure all other vaccines are up to date.

Valley Animal Center says if your pet is showing signs of being sick it is always best to pay attention to their symptoms and if necessary call a local vet.

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