Experts from University of Guelph discuss potential risks of avian flu in pets and humans
With the known cases of avian flu in the world, researchers from the University of Guelph are now discussing the potential risks it may pose to both humans and pets. Pandemic diseases such as avian flu have the capability to cause widespread and serious illness, and it is important to know the possible consequences it may have on our furry friends and ourselves.
The Potential Impact on Pets
While it is quite rare for birds to contract avian flu, it can happen when these birds come in close contact with infected wild birds or contaminated surfaces. But can avian flu be transmitted to pets such as cats and dogs? Experts say that the direct transmission from birds to pets is extremely rare, but in certain circumstances, it could happen.
There is no evidence of sustained transmission of avian flu between pets and human cases have been relatively low. However, pets that have come into contact with infected birds and their secretions face potential health risks, making it necessary to be vigilant and take necessary precautions in such circumstances.
The Risks to Humans
Avian flu can cause severe respiratory illnesses in humans, making it important to minimize the risks of exposure to the virus. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention emphasizes that it is unlikely for avian flu to infect humans directly but rather the risk is posed when individuals come in contact with contaminated water and surfaces.
The experts also note that proper cooking and safe handling of poultry products can reduce the risks of exposure. People who have close contact with infected birds or surfaces should use protective equipment, follow safe hygiene practices, and avoid exposure to sick and infected animals.
To minimize the risks of avian flu transmission to humans and pets, it is essential to implement specific preventive measures. First, individuals should limit their contact with birds, especially those that may appear sick. Second, always wash hands after handling birds and avoid touching your face or mouth after.
Thirdly, it is vital to cook poultry products thoroughly to eliminate the risks of exposure to avian flu. This means heating poultry to internal temperatures of 165°F or higher. Lastly, keep your pets away from infected birds and surfaces that may harbor the virus.
Avian flu is a significant risk to both humans and pets, and it is important to take necessary precautions to minimize the risks of transmission. While pets contracting the flu directly from birds is rare, they may face risks of exposure from infected birds and surfaces. Similarly, humans may get infected by coming in close contact with contaminated water and surfaces. It is crucial to follow specific preventive measures such as limiting your contact with birds, washing hands after handling them, and cooking poultry products thoroughly to avoid any risks of transmission. #HEALTH