Can my dog catch my flu? Here’s the Answer

Can a Dog Get a Cold from a Human?

Achoo! Are you sneezing? Do you have a stuffy nose or a sore throat? In humans, colds appear after a person comes in contact with another human infected with a virus. Other symptoms, besides sneezing, a sore throat, or a stuffy nose, include watery eyes or excess mucus in the nose and throat. So, can a dog get a cold from you?

Heres some great news: If youre sick and your pup wants to give you a smooch and cuddle to raise your spirits, you dont have to turn him away. Some infections, viruses, or even bacteria are species-specific, which is why you dont need to worry about sharing a common cold. A human cold can only affect humans. It cannot be transmitted to animals, says PetMD.

Can a dog get a cold from another dog? Unfortunately, the answer to that is yes. While you may not be able to pass your cold to your pet, that doesnt mean another dogs sneezing cant get your pup sick. In fact, many of your dogs symptoms will mimic a humans. According to PetMD, “While there are differences in the types of viruses that infect humans versus dogs, the symptoms are basically the same: sneezing, coughing, runny or stuffy nose, watery eyes.” There are many types of viruses that dogs can spread to each other. Lets take a look at one of the most common dog colds:

A highly contagious respiratory disease, kennel cough is often contracted when dogs are boarded or spend time in a place with numerous dogs, such as a dog show or training class. The worst part is your dog doesnt even need to come into direct contact with an infected dog. The virus can live on items, such as on water bowls or on favorite toys the dog may have left some saliva. According to Vetstreet, “A blaring, hacking cough like a goose honk is the most common sign [of kennel cough]. Affected dogs will often retch and gag, as if trying to dislodge something from their throats.” Dogs that come in contact with kennel cough will usually show symptoms within four to ten days. Treatment includes anything from watching and waiting to a prescription of antibiotics.

Which pets you can infect with the flu

Common pets at risk of infection include:

Thats because the flu virus that can jump from humans to their pets mainly infects warm-blooded mammals and birds. So pets who are not at risk of infections include:

How is canine influenza virus spread?

Almost all dogs are susceptible to canine flu infection, and virus infection tends to spread among dogs housed in kennels and shelters. Canine flu is thought to spread mainly among dogs through respiratory droplets produced during coughing and sneezing from infected dogs, or through contact with contaminated surfaces. Therefore, dog owners whose dogs are coughing or showing other signs of respiratory disease should not expose their dog to other dogs or to cats. Clothing, equipment, surfaces, and hands should be cleaned and disinfected after exposure to dogs showing signs of respiratory disease.

Can Dogs Catch the Flu from Humans?