A 4-year-old boy in China has the H3N8 bird flu.

A 4-year-old boy in China has become the first human case of H3N8 bird flu.

The boy, from Henan province, was exposed to chickens and crows at home, which could have spread the virus.

The boy had an avian strain of the H3N8 virus, which can also infect horses (equine influenza virus) and dogs (canine influenza virus).

It has now reached humans, though the risk of human-to-human transmission is low, according to Reuters.

Though avian flu viruses originated in birds and rarely spread to other animals, such as dogs and horses, Live Science previously reported.

Human-adapted bird flu strains include H5N1, H7N9, H5N6, H5N8, and now H3N8.

A genetic analysis of the Henan province case suggests the variant is a reassortant, created by mixing genes from multiple avian flu viruses.

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