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9/19/2017 7:27:10 PM
Posted: 2/28/2006 12:48:56 PM EDT
Germany reported Tuesday the first known case in Europe of H5N1 bird flu infecting a cat, a worrying new development as the virus sweeps past hastily erected protective measures in large swathes of the world.

The dead cat was found on the Baltic Sea island of Ruegen, where the highly pathogenic form of H5N1 bird flu was detected mid-February, said Germany's national veterinary laboratory, the Friedrich Loeffler Institute.

More tests were being carried out to find out if the cat had the highly pathogenic strain of H5N1 which can kill humans.

"It has long been known from Asia that cats can be infected if they eat infected birds," said the laboratory chief, Thomas Mettenleiter.

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