Cat in Iowa Catches Swine Flu

"This is the first case we've heard of in cats, and I'm curious to know how the case presented itself," Rowell said.

"The good news is that it appears that the cat and the family members have recovered just fine."

Although ferret owners are experienced in dealing with human-to-ferret flu, cat owners may not be and veterinarians have some specific recommendations.

What Should People Do If Their Animal Seems Sick?

If an owner is worried that their cat or dog has the swine flu, veterinarians recommend that owners not rush to the local vet's office demanding an H1N1 test.

"If people are going to their vet with their cat or dog, there's not, to my knowledge, an easily accessible way for vets to test them for H1N1," Johnson said.

To protect the household from pet flu infections, veterinarians recommend the same precautions families should take when a person falls ill.

"Wash your hands before and after touching your pet, and avoid sneezing on your animal," Rowell said. "And if you suspect your pet has the flu, do not treat him or her with drugs yourself, bring them in to your veterinarian. Treating them with over-the-counter flu medicines may do much more harm than good."

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