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Archive for Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Experts: Dog is 1st in nation with swine flu

December 23, 2009

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— A dog in suburban New York is the first in the nation confirmed to be carrying the same strain of swine flu that is infecting humans, experts said Tuesday.

The 13-year-old mixed breed male, which is recovering, apparently caught the virus from his owner. But Michael San Filippo, a spokesman for the American Veterinary Medical Association, said there’s no evidence that the flu strain can be transmitted from a pet to a person.

“In theory it could happen, but so far it’s really looking like a dead end in pets,” he said.

Dr. Anne Schuchat of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday that animals can carry and spread flu viruses, but such cases are rare and people should not be afraid to enjoy their pets.

The CDC says swine flu is waning among humans. It said infections were widespread in 11 states, down from 48 in late October.

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