Animal health officials confirm canine flu cases in Minnesota

A strain of canine flu has infected dogs in Minnesota, officials with the state Board of Animal Health said Wednesday.

Recent test results confirm that at least five Minnesota dogs were infected with the influenza virus H3N2.

All of the dogs likely were exposed to the virus when they visited the Lucky Dog Boarding and Training Center in Detroit Lakes, officials said.

The dogs began showing signs of illness on April 7. Linda Wiedewitsch, who owns the boarding and training facility, said on the Board of Animal Health website that she believes the virus was introduced when a dog from Yorkville, Ill., arrived at the facility on March 30.

The dog showed no signs of illness during the visit, but became ill with signs consistent with influenza shortly after it left. Yorkville is in the Chicago area, where earlier this month experts said an epidemic of dog flu sickened more than 1,000 dogs and was spreading in the Midwest.

The dogs at the Detroit Lakes facility developed a cough. Some ran fevers and some had a cloudy nasal discharge, but all have fully recovered, officials said. No new cases have been seen at the facility since April 25.

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