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Avian flu outbreak prompts response from local health agencies and animal services

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – Local doctors and animal experts are asking farmworkers and beachgoers to take caution around animals as the avian flu spreads across the country.

"Don't eat or drink around birds or livestock," said SLO County Public Health.

Dr. Rick Rosen with San Luis Obispo County Public Health said the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) has spread from birds, to cows, chickens and cats, adding that it is only "a matter of time" before it spreads to other species.

"Wash your hands after touching birds or livestock or items in the space where they live," said Public Health.

The FDA announced Tuesday that some grocery story milk products have tested positive for the flu.

One human dairy worker tested positive in Texas this month.

Local doctors and animal service crews want our local farmworkers to take caution by wearing masks and gloves when handling certain animals.

"Avoid direct contact with sick or dead birds, livestock, and their feces unless wearing recommended PPE," said SLO County Public Health.

Doctors also remind beachgoers to not touch or go near dead birds.

"Had contact with a sick or dead bird or other animal? Watch for symptoms and contact your doctor right away if you start to feel sick," said Public Health.

If you don’t have a regular doctor, you can contact Public Health at 805-781-5500.

Your News Channel is speaking with local experts to see how the national outbreak is affecting the Central Coast.

Click here to learn more about avian flu.

Article Topic Follows: San Luis Obispo County
San Luis Obispo County Public Health Department

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