Avian flu has decimated the marine creatures on the country’s Pacific coastline and scientists fear it could be jumping from mammal to mammal
A pet dog in Oshawa has died after testing positive for avian flu, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency says. The CFIA says the number of documented cases of H5N1 — also known as avian flu — in other species like cats and dogs is low, and based on current evidence, the risk to the general public remains low.
The highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI), commonly known as the bird flu, has now been linked to other animals across the state.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports more than 53 million birds across the U.S. have died from highly pathogenic avian influenza. The CDC’s count of 4,000-plus infected is far from reliable. The disease contracting to people is believed to be extremely rare.
A black bear cub in Southeast Alaska was sick last month with bird flu, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. The cub found in Bartlett Cove, Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, is only the second instance of highly pathogenic avian influenza being diagnosed in a bear amid an ongoing outbreak. Health officials say risk to mammals, including people, remains low.
It’s one of only four mammals in Alaska to contract the virus, and the first brown bear to be found with the disease.
"We had an unusually large number of calls about skunks that were acting strange or being found dead and it was all within the area where we had confirmed that the avian influenza virus was present in the snow geese," Dr. Margo Pybus, a provincial wildlife disease specialist with Fish and Wildlife Alberta Environment and Parks, said. "We believe that the skunks are feeding on the dead geese and they are getting enough virus that it’s actually affecting the skunks."