Kent Animal Shelter to offer reduced cost doggie flu shots

COURTESY PHOTO | A dog at Kent Animal Shelter is administered the canine flu vaccine.

The humans in your home aren’t the only ones who are susceptible to the runny noses and coughing fits associated with flu season.

To prevent the spread of the recently developed canine influenza virus, Kent Animal Shelter will soon be offering reduced cost flu vaccines.

The vaccine requires two injections about three weeks apart. The Calverton shelter will be offering the shots on April 2 and May 7 for $10. Kent recently recieved a grant from the Building Community Immunity Grant from the Petfinder Foundation to offer the vaccine at a reduced cost.

“This is a perfect opportunity for pet owners to protect their pets against illnesses and transmittable diseases at a very low cost,” said Kent director Pam Green.

There are two forms of canine influenza, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. If a dog contracts the mild form, it can develop a cough and nasal discharge. If a dog contracts the more severe form, it can develop a high fever and exhibit signs of pneumonia.

The vaccine has been shown to minimize symptoms and control the spread of the virus and has been proven safe in half a million dogs, according to the shelter.

The disease was first reported in dogs in 2004, according to the AVMA. The association recommends scheduling an appointment with a veterinarian if a dog exhibits symptoms.

Dog owners can pre-register dogs for the vaccine by calling 727-7797. Pre-registration is mandatory.