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Dog Flu H3N2: What Pet Care Providers Should Know

sick terrier with thermometer in his mouth and ice pack on his head
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On May 30, the Florida Department of Agriculture along with the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine confirmed the first seven cases of the H2N3 dog flu in Florida. Since that time, five more dogs in Florida have confirmed cases of the dog flu bring the total to 12 dogs. Here’s what pet sitters, dog walkers, and pet groomers should know.

The dog flu has been around since 2015 and infected many dogs throughout most of the United States. H3N2 is very contagious and there is a strain of the disease that may even transfer the illness to cats. However, the dog flu is rarely fatal and is not known to affect humans.

What Causes H3N2 Dog Flu

According to the University of Florida, the primary way that dogs are being infected is through other dogs. In fact, infected dogs can spread the illness within a 20-foot radius. Additionally, the virus can survive in food bowls, water bowls, pet toys, and even humans who have interacted with a sick dog for up to 24 hours.

The good news is that the virus doesn’t stand a chance against soap and water, so be sure to wash everything the pet uses as well as your hands.

What Are the Symptoms?

As a pet sitter, dog walker, or groomer, you should be on the lookout for the following symptoms:

  • Coughing & Sneezing
  • Lethargy
  • Fever
  • Decreased Appetite

These symptoms may appear in any dog regardless of the breed. However, dogs that don’t go to kennels, shows, vet clinics, or daycares will be at much lower risk.

What to Do if You Suspect the Flu

As a pet care provider, the first thing you will want to do is notify the dog owner that their pet may be getting sick. However, neither you, nor the pet owner should take the pet immediately to a veterinary clinic in order to prevent other dogs from becoming sick.

If you suspect dog flu, call the pet’s veterinarian and tell them what the dog’s symptoms are and when they started. It may also be helpful to tell them if the dog has been at a kennel or daycare recently. The vet will then be able coordinate with you to set up an appointment.

Treating H3N2

Most of the time dogs can recover in the comfort of their home. The flu should only last about 2 weeks, but the dog can remain infectious for up to a month, so they should be kept away from other dogs during that time.

According to the University of Florida, about 20 percent of dogs will develop pneumonia. If you suspect that the dog is getting sicker, be sure to contact the vet right away.

How Insurance Helps You Help Dogs

As someone who takes care of dogs on a daily basis, you may want to consider purchasing a pet care insurance policy. If a dog were to get sick or injured while in your care, custody, or control, you may be held legally and financially responsible for that pet, even if you are not directly at fault.

Pet Care Insurance (PCI) can offer you the protection that your pet care business needs. Our basic policy includes animal bailee—often called care, custody, or control—veterinary expense reimbursement, and general liability coverage. Visit our coverage details page to learn more.

Annual Pet Insurance Policy

This policy is for professionals who work in the pet care industry.

$139

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Call: 844-520-6990

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    The contest is open to legal United States residents who are 18 years of age or older at the time of entry. The contest is only open to those who follow the instructions and enter their name and email address on the website landing page

    https://www.petcareins.com/groomer-to-groomer Employees of Pet Care Insurance, their respective affiliates, contractors, subsidiaries, advertising and promotion agencies and partners, suppliers and their immediate family members and/or those living in the same household of each are not eligible to participate in the contest. The contest is subject to all applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations. Void where prohibited.

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    here will be 1 (one) winner who will receive 1 (one) Amazon Gift Card. The Approximate retail price of the Amazon Gift Card is = $100 USD. At the discretion of PCI, the gift card may be delivered either electronically or by means of free standard shipping to the United States.PCI reserves the right to substitute an item of equal or greater value if any items listed above are out of stock or otherwise unavailable. Actual/appraised value may differ at the time of prize award. The specifics of the prize shall be solely determined by the Sponsor. No cash or other prize substitution permitted except at Sponsor’s discretion. The prize is non-transferable. Any and all prize related expenses, including without limitation any and all federal, state, and/or local taxes shall be the sole responsibility of the winner. No substitution of a prize or transfer/assignment of a prize to others or request for the cash equivalent by winners is permitted. Acceptance of prize constitutes permission for PCI to use winner’s name, likeness, and entry for purposes of advertising and trade without further compensation, unless prohibited by law.

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Comparing Employee Dishonesty Coverage & Bonding

PCI’s employee dishonesty coverage is similar to a bond, but there may be some key differences to consider.

Employee dishonesty coverage:

  • Can be purchased in the same transaction
  • Doesn’t run credit checks
  • Provides $10,000 per occurrence and $25,000 aggregate coverage

Bonds may differ from our dishonesty coverage by:

  • Checking your credit during the application process
  • Having a “Conviction Claus;” Often bonds won’t pay on claims unless there is a conviction
  • Many require you to reimbursement the bonding company after a claim is paid