Dogs could be the carrier of the next deadly flu outbreak among humans، a new study warns. Until now، pigs and birds have been seen as a bigger disease threat to people، since they can carry diverse types of influenza، while dogs tend to carry canine-specific strain، as theDaily Maily saids. But a new report shows the virus is becoming increasingly diversified in domestic dogs، making them prime vectors of disease. The New York City researchers warn the development could be the tipping point to triggering one of the worst flu outbreaks seen in recent years since humans have much more contact with dogs than with pigs and birds. 'The majority of pandemics have been associated with pigs as an intermediate host between avian viruses and human hosts،' said study investigator Adolfo García-Sastre، PhD، of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt Sinai. 'In this study، we identified influenza viruses jumping from pigs into dogs.' The researchers say it is time to think about ways to restrict the circulation of the influenza virus in dogs. 'The United States is free of avian influenza because every time avian influenza has been detected in poultry in this country، the chickens or turkeys are culled and eliminated from circulation،' said Dr. García-Sastre. 'There are attempts to restrict influenza virus in pigs through vaccination and one could consider vaccination for dogs.' Dr Adolfo Garcia-Sastre، director of the school's Global Health and Emerging Pathogens Institute، explains that this development stems from a turning point 15 years ago، when researchers documented an influenza virus in a horse jumping into a dog. That was the first recorded set of circulating canine influenza viruses. In 2013، researchers found farm dogs in Guangdong، China، carrying a strain of the aggressive H3N2 flu caught from birds. 'In our study، what we have found is another set of viruses that come from swine that are originally avian in origin، and now they are jumping into dogs and have been reassorted with other viruses in dogs،' Dr Garcia-Sastre said. 'We now have H1N1، H3N2، and H3N8 in dogs. They are starting to interact with each other. This is very reminiscent of what happened in swine ten years before the H1N1 pandemic.'