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H1N1 influenza virus linked to illness and death of 11 US pets

On December 10, 2009, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) announced the death of another pet from the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus. This brings the national total of pet deaths associated with the virus to 11 pets ā€“ seven cats and four ferrets. The first US case of a pet dying from the 2009 H1N1 virus was a ferret, reported in early October 2009. The first cat death was reported in early November -- a 13-year-old indoor cat in Iowa. In every case, the pets' owners had flu-like symptoms before the animals developed signs - lethargy, lost its appetite, and difficulty breathing - of the illness.

The AVMA tracks cases of the virus in animals. This tracking includes details on more than 30 reports going back to April 29, 2009.

According to an interview, in November 2009, conducted with Dr. Scott Sandeman owner of Glenroads Veterinary Clinic in Bettendorf and LeClaire Veterinary Clinic in LeClaire Iowa, there is no evidence to suggest that our pets can give us the H1N1 virus.

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