Cases of Bird Flu Detected in Ontario: Health Officials Urge Precautions to Prevent Spread

Peel Public Health has urged residents and pet owners to take necessary precautions to limit the spread of avian flu and protect the health and safety of both humans and animals.

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Several cases of bird flu have been reported in various locations across Ontario, Canada, raising concerns about the potential spread of the virus. Most recently, a flock of dead geese found in Caledon tested positive for the virus, following a similar case in Brampton earlier this month. While the virus poses a low risk to humans, it can be highly pathogenic and has been responsible for the deaths of millions of birds and the infection of numerous avian species in Canada since early 2022.

In response to these cases, Peel Public Health has urged residents and pet owners to take necessary precautions to limit the spread of avian flu and protect the health and safety of both humans and animals. Among the recommended precautions are keeping animals away from waterfowl or fecal matter, not feeding or interacting with waterfowl, keeping cats indoors and dogs on a leash, avoiding feeding pets raw meat from game birds or poultry, and restricting pet birds to the indoors. Additionally, bird feeders should be removed or washed frequently to reduce the chance of bacterial or viral contamination.

These incidents follow the detection of avian flu at a southern Ontario poultry farm and a commercial poultry operation southeast of Hamilton earlier this month. Moreover, the Toronto Zoo had to shut down some of its bird enclosures after detecting the virus in some of its birds.

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The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has been working closely with local authorities to monitor and contain the spread of the virus, while researchers continue to study the virus to better understand its behavior and potential risks. The agency is urging anyone who comes across dead birds or unusual bird behavior to report it immediately to the Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative or local authorities.

In light of these developments, health officials are calling on the public to remain vigilant and take necessary precautions to prevent the spread of avian flu, both for the safety of animals and for the potential risk to human health.

Prabhnoor Kaur

NEWS

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