All Dogs Go to Quarantine

Dog flu fears curb adoptions in Fairfax County

By Matthew Stabley
|  Friday, Aug 14, 2009  |  Updated 1:46 PM EDT
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All Dogs Go to Quarantine

WilleeCole, Shutterstock

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FAIRFAX, Va. -- Fairfax County's postponing this weekend's cute-fest to curb a possible outbreak of dog flu.

Only two cases of canine influenza have been laboratory confirmed at the county animal shelter at 4500 West Ox Road, but 29 more dogs may have been exposed to the virus. They are being monitored.

"While this illness is not contagious to humans, it does spread among dogs, and we are taking precautions to limit its spread," said animal shelter Director Karen Diviney, Ph.D. "This illness is generally not life-threatening to dogs, however in some cases dogs can develop severe disease. Anywhere dogs congregate could be potential breeding grounds for the virus."

A planned weekend pet adoption event is on hold.

To keep your dogs safe and healthy, keep them away from places where dogs gather, like dog parks and kennels. If you must kennel your pup, ask first about prior illnesses at the kennel.

And if your dog shows symptoms like coughing, wheezing, runny nose or fever, seek veterinary care immediately, for the dog.

There's no evidence sick dogs can pass the virus to other pets, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

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