The New Canine Influenza, Greyhound Disease, Race Flu, Equine
Influenza, Avian Flu
The New Canine Flu, which has killed so many greyhounds is now in the
domestic dog population. There is no treatment and no vaccine. It has
jumped species, (by feeding greyhounds raw horse meat, which was
infected with horse influenza), (horse influenza is avian flu, which
jumped species from birds (avian flu), to horses(horse influenza). The
avian flu has now moved to racing greyhounds and domestic dogs and the
indications are that there may be a potential problem for humans. It
is deadly and it is on the loose. It may just be a matter of time. The
CDC is watching the disease.
There is no central tracking agency with report and stat capability
for dogs that will get the word out to all vets in the US.
The domestic dog population is at present risk.
This week on my net groups I saw many anecdotal accounts of $100,000
show dogs dying while packed in ice and hooked up to IVs, with high
temps. No one knows what is wrong with these dogs and the vets do not
know what they are treating. I think it is Greyhound Influenza or Race
Show populations are now infected and the majority of veterinarians
have never heard of the disease. Isolated individuals know this but
the country as a whole does not. A few days after exposure at dog
shows, dogs are traveling back to their home states and infecting the
local populations. Many dogs are dying needlessly. It is not kennel
The period of incubation is 2-5 days. It is airborne, can be
transmitted by inanimate objects, and clothing. Virtually all exposed
will contract. The morbidity is 80% with 20% being sub clinically
affected and shedding the virus. The course of the disease is four
weeks. There are two forms, milder and very extreme. Two weeks into
the viral disease the dog looks like he is getting over the cough and
then bacterial infections become an acute problem. Oft times the owner
has reported the dog is well, only to find that a short time later an
acute bacterial infection has taken over the dog, in a matter of
hours. The owners think the disease has run its course only to learn
it hasn't gotten started yet, so dogs are dying needlessly.
My vet thinks earlier rather than later treatment with broad spectrum
antibiotics are the best way to treat the disease. With proper vet
care perhaps there will only be a mortality of 1-5%.
The information needs to go out so that all vets will know this is not
kennel cough, so they will not VAX for kennel cough while ill, and so
they can monitor beyond the two week period.
It has been almost impossible for me to understand how in the last
four days i have contacted state vets who have never heard of the new
influenza, all the while, the people with the info on the disease,
refuse to release it nationally.
The AVMA has info that will go out next month. How many will die prior
to that? I have begged and cajoled them to do this, so perhaps we are
making some headway, however, we need info to go out ASAP.
APHIS says it is not their job.
The people who are handling research on the initial outbreak in FLA.,
are contacting local, (FLA) BUT not national sources to disseminate
Below is a link to a photo album in which i placed the FLA Veterinary
Alert and Advisory, which was put out by the FLA VET MED ASSOC., at
the request of the State Vet. It is not on the state website.
In my conversations with the researchers at the U. of FLA. I was
told, by the lead researcher, who owns greyhounds, that they have no
responsibility to provide this info to other states or to other vets.
(BTW, Is some of the research funded by the gaming organizations?)
(My state,GA., the state of FLA., and three highly placed individuals
at Pfizer, told me to call the researcher.) The researcher said to me
that cultures do not need to be done on potential affecteds, and she
denied that the illness is from horses, though she is quoted in
articles as applauding the Cornell researcher who identified it as
horse influenza. The FLA state vet said:"We know it came from horses."
The researcher is working to do a contracted vaccine with " a
company." She is working on a paper. She did not want to discuss the
influenza though her name, email and number appears as the contact
source on the state of FLA Veterinary Alert and Advisory that went out
to all FLA vets. I was told by some at Pfizer that Pfizer is not the
company who is helping her develop the vaccine.
The researcher said the FLA VETERINARY ALERT AND ADVISORY should not
be put on the net. However the FLA state Vet, Dr. Thomas Holt, told
me, on Fri., Sept 16, 2005 to put it on the net..."Feel free to use it."
AGAIN< I have spoken to state vets who do not know anything at all
about this illness even though the state of FLA. put out memos on the
influenza in August 05 in the state of FLA., without notifying other
If the researchers are correct there will be a national epidemic. When
a disease is in a mobile population an epidemic is possible. Large
groupings of dogs, such as shows, kennels, rescues, etc., are at risk.
Most vets across the country have never heard of the disease. A
treatment protocol has not been developed. They are treating it as if
it is kennel cough. All vets need to be informed about it ASAP! Many
of us concerned dog people would like to see state statistics compiled
on the illness and the eventual treatment outcomes.
We need you to get the word out.
What can you do?
1. Request that your state vet put this info on the state website, and
that he send this info to all accredited vets in his state requesting
that all vets report the incidence of the disease, diagnostic tests
and the course of the illness to the state. Each incidence of illness
a. Live cultures performed at a diagnostic laboratory
b. Written reports on the disease by the attending vet
2. The AVMA needs to act now and provide ALL information regarding
this disease to all members, pls contact them and ask them to contact
all members with info. Please ask them to put something up on their
3. Put the FLA VETERINARY ALERT AND ADVISORY ON YOUR WEBSITE.
4. Contact the State Vet of Fla., and ask him to provide the FLA
Veterinary Alert and advisory to all state vets, and to all state vet
med associations, and to put it up on the FLA state Ag website:
FLA State Ag:
Dr. Thomas Holt
Phone: 850 410-0900
FAX: 850 410 0915