Paws and Claws recommending no dogs at Pet Walk due to canine influenza concerns

(ABC 6 News) – Paws and Claws Humane Society in Rochester is recommending no dogs at its annual Pet Walk this Saturday due to canine influenza virus concerns.

The shelter said after consulting with the shelter veterinarian and the Minnesota Board of Animal Health, they are recommending no dogs at the walk despite having no known cases of canine influenza in southeast Minnesota.

In early April, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health officially quarantined an organization operating animal shelters in Hennepin, Anoka and Washington Counties after the Board was informed of suspected cases of canine influenza, a highly infectious disease in dogs, when the organization reported nearly 200 sick dogs at its facilities.

RELATED: MDH: Suspected canine influenza outbreak prompts quarantines in metro animal shelters

Just last week, the Board released new guidance for dog owners, dog care facilities, and veterinarians as it continues to track more confirmed cases of the virus.

RELATED: Minnesota Board of Animal Health releases new guidance for pet owners to combat spread of canine influenza virus

The shelter says that taking preventative measures like this will help keep the canine community safe and healthy, and help prevent the spread of the virus.

Although no dogs can attend, they do encourage people to bring other pets. They will have vendors and prizes to win. The Pet Walk will be at Cook Park with registration beginning at 9:00 a.m.