Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Can Pets Get The Swine Flu?

In general, influenza viruses are not transmitted from one species to another. For example, dogs and cats don't develop the flu after exposure to owners with who have had a flu virus. 

While it is theoretically possible for a new influenza strain to be transmissible between humans and other domestic animals, it is likely that such a strain would be transmissible between only humans and one other animal. Because the "Swine Flu" virus contains genetic elements of human, pig and avian flu viruses, it would seem very unlikely that this strain would have the ability to infect hosts which are not humans, pigs or birds.

With no help from the folks in charge of the studies, pigs seem to be getting a bad reputation over the so-called "swine flu". To abolish the theory that porkers are to blame scientists are renaming it "H1N1" influenza. To date, there is no scientific evidence that a pig can even be infected by the new virus, so for right now pigs are in the clear and it's probably safe to leave the bacon on your BLT. 

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association,"there is no evidence that pets are susceptible to this new strain of influenza; it appears to be transmitted solely from person to person".

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