May 4, 2009
Rich: Swine flu pandemic reports mount every day, so the WoofGang remains watchful. In the interest of public safety, the WoofGang Department of Dogland Security (DDS) boosted its swine flu advisory level to two ears up. DDS epidemiologists evaluate new information as quickly as it is retrieved. If current conditions deteriorate, the advisory level will be adjusted to an unprecedented three ears up.
DDS advises that graver dangers may lie ahead. The swine flu reportedly migrates from one species to another; dogs could be next. Preliminary reports indicate this is already happening in remote areas along the coast of Labrador. Could the swine flu virus migrate to the canine population and then to humans? Experts say 40 percent of U.S. households owns a dog. The propagation rate of canine flu would exceed that of swine flu. Comparatively few households own family pigs.
A canine flu pandemic could overwhelm medical and veterinary resources. In anticipation of an onslaught of walk-in patients, DDS issued an advisory late yesterday to veterinary clinics worldwide to upgrade their billing systems. DDS also alerted lapdog journalists to begin frightening the public over yet another world catastrophe.
The canine flu virus mutates rapidly, adapting to its host DNA. Within days hundreds of thousands of viral variants could replicate--roughly equivalent to the number of breeds recognized by the American Kennel Club (whose website is strangely silent on this issue).
HOW CANINE FLU PRESENTS IN HUMANS
* Retching or belching from deep within
* Increased sensitivity to smells; desire to sniff others
* Hiccups and twitching while sleeping
* Scratching behind the ear using one foot or the other
* Head cocking while engaged in active listening
* Sudden interest in chewing, especially remote controls and undergarments
* Ceaseless retrieving for no apparent reason
* Excessive excitement at drive-up fast-food windows
* Jumping on strangers or house guests
* Incessant drooling before meals
* Hair loss, especially in spring and fall
* Marking your territory
Variants of the virus originate in specific breeds and are especially dangerous to humans:
Germinus Labradorus: extreme hunger, swallowing before chewing
Bichon Friseicus: production of excessive eye goop
Germanicus Shepardus: using your nose to round up your children
Your dog could be a canine flu carrier. If so, you are in imminent danger. Fortunately you can readily determine if that furry friend sleeping on your sofa is an actual domestic danger. If your dog responds immediately, joyfully, and obediently to your verbal commands, something is alarmingly wrong. Before panicking, verify this is your dog. If it is, take immediate corrective action.
Authorities at the CDC (Centers for Dogs-ease Control) expressed concern that the term "canine flu" could mistakenly create the impression all dogs are carriers. After assuring the public that First Dog, Bo, is "apparently healthy," a senior administration official in the Dog House said a team labored deep into the night evaluating less offensive designations. The Dog House, working in conjunction with the WoofGang, will monitor this blog for alternative names for the virus in its comments section.
Am I safe?
What can I do to avoid catching the canine flu?
Nothing. Trying to prevent the flu is like chasing your tail.
What should I do if I catch the flu?
Tie yourself outside and be happy I don't throttle you.
No, seriously, what should I do?
Sit, lie down, stay. At home.
Posted by Rich, Jane, Boomer, and Daisy at 12:01 AM