Skip to content

Swine Flu (Influenza A)

Swine flu is a virus found in pigs caused by influenza A virus (H1N1). The swine flu can spread to pigs during the year, but it is most common in Fall and Winter. Sometimes the flu virus can spread from animals to humans.


How can I get sick?

  • The most common way is when a sick pig or human coughs or sneezes and spreads the virus into the air.
  • Swine flu can also be spread by touching a sick pig or surface that has the virus and then touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
    • Example: You are feeding an infected pig and then rub your eyes, or you touch a water bowl from an infected* pig then touch your mouth or eyes.

Symptoms in humans:

  • Fever (when your body gets a little hotter than normal)

  • Chills (feeling of being cold and shivering)
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Red/watery eyes
  • Body pain
  • Headache
  • Tired
  • Diarrhea (runny poop)
  • Feeling like you need to throw up
  • Throwing up

Symptoms in pigs: 

  • Fever (when your pig’s body is hotter than normal)
  • Sad or unhappy
  • Coughing (barking)
  • Leaking from the nose or eyes
  • Sneezing
  • Has a hard time breathing
  • Eye redness
  • Doesn’t want to eat

Not all infected* pigs will show signs of sickness. Some might look healthy or barely look sick.

What can I do to stay healthy?

  • When attending a fair, touching or playing with pigs or if you are around pig barns, make sure you do not eat, drink or put anything in your mouth.
  • Do not bring toys, pacifiers, bottles, strollers or similar items into pig barns or pig areas.
  • Do not touch pigs that look sick.
  • Always wash your hands after touching a pig or its environment.
    • Proper Handwashing – Wash your hands with soap and running water for at least 20 seconds. Make sure to scrub your thumbs, between your fingers and the tops and bottoms of your hands. Dry your hands with a paper towel.

  • Call your veterinarian if you think your pig is sick or is showing signs of sickness.

  • If you are around sick pigs, make sure to wear gloves and a face mask.

  • If you feel sick, try to stay away from your pig.



  • Infected: When germs get inside of a body, animal, or an organism.

Species Affected

Learn About Other Diseases

Click below to learn more about the many different diseases that can spread between animals and humans.