Can Dogs Get Colds or Flu?

When the trees start to lose their leaves and we have to defrost the car each morning, we know one thing for certain – cold and flu season is on the way. This has just become a natural fact for humans and we’re no stranger to stock piling tissues and tablets, but what about our four-legged friends?


Can dogs get colds?

No, dogs don’t get colds in the same way that humans do and they cannot catch the cold virus that causes symptoms in humans. However, dogs can get infections that create symptoms like a cold, such as sneezing and congestion. In general, these ‘dog colds’ are specific to that species, so you won’t be able to catch the same cold as your dog either.


Can dogs catch a cold from humans?

It is very unlikely that your dog will contract a cold from a human. If you have a sniffle or cough, you may be worried that you may pass the cold onto your companion, but you’ll be glad to know that this isn’t possible. Dogs are not affected by the common cold virus that infects humans.


Can dogs get the flu?

Dogs also can’t get the same type of flu as humans, but they can get canine flu. The symptoms are relatively similar to flu in humans but have a different cause. Your dog may experience the following: sneezing, runny nose, coughing, lethargy, lack of appetite and fever. Dog flu is easily spread between other canines once they’ve been exposed to the illness, and according to Pets Web MD, if your dog is exposed to an infected dog, the chances of them getting it are very high.

And while humans can’t get ill from dog flu, if you’ve been in contact with an infected dog, there is a possibility that you could pass it onto your dog too. Dog flu can live for a few minutes on your skin, but up to a day on your clothes. If you’re around an infected dog, make sure you change and wash your clothes before you see any other dogs.