Cow gives man bird flu

A man in Texas developed avian flu after contact with an infected cow there, reports the Texas Department of State Health Service. He is experiencing mild symptoms of the disease and undergoing a course of antiviral medication. It is the first recorded case linked to transmission from cattle; the risk to humans remains low, according to the CDC.

According to the CDC, this is the second human case of H5N1 flu in the United States and the first linked to an exposure to cattle. In March, the Texas Animal Health Commission announced the first cases of avian influenza A(H5N1) in dairy cattle in the Texas Panhandle. DSHS is working with TAHC, CDC and other state and federal health agencies to investigate the human and animal cases and understand how the virus is spreading in order to protect livestock and people who work with it.

Avian influenza A(H5N1) is a type of flu virus that usually infects wild birds and can spread to domestic birds and other animals. It occasionally infects people, though it is extremely rare for it to be transmitted from one person to another. Initial testing shows the virus has not changed in a way to make it more likely to spread among humans.

Fair life milk for me!

From a health alert published a few weeks ago:

In March 2024, samples were collected and tested for influenza from several animals in Texas and Kansas. These animals, including wild birds, cats, and dairy cows, were tested because they exhibited signs of illness. Some of the animals tested positive for influenza. Further testing of these samples indicated the presence of avian influenza A(H5N1). This is the first time avian influenza A(H5N1) has been detected in cattle in the United States. DSHS, including regional staff have been working with other state and federal health agencies to investigate suspect cases of avian influenza A(H5N1) in both humans and animals.

The USDA and state animal health agencies routinely conduct surveillance for avian influenza A viruses in poultry in the United States and have previously detected the same strain of influenza A(H5N1) in backyard poultry flocks in Texas. Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Detected in Moore County Birds (; HPAI Confirmations in Commercial and Backyard Flocks (

Symptoms are not particularly distinctive:

Fever (temperature of 100°F [37.8°C] or greater) or feeling feverish or chills
Sore throat
Runny or stuffy nose
Eye redness (conjunctivitis)
Difficulty breathing/shortness of breath

Previously: This map tracks the global avian flu outbreak