Pet Diseases you can Catch

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Did you know that most pets carry diseases that they could pass on to you and your kids? According to experts, 75% of all known diseases have originated from animals.

House pets and illness

Find out how house pets might be the cause of your illness

Pet Diseases you can Catch

Do you have pets in your home? They’re very cute, aren’t they? But did you know that most pets carry diseases that they could pass on to you and your kids? According to experts, 75% of all known diseases have originated from animals.

These past few years, we’ve heard of E. Coli outbreaks at a petting farm in the UK, and the spread of the mad cow disease through cattle causing the death of more than a hundred people. Dr. Hilary Kirkbride, a consultant at the Health Protection Agency in the UK said that most infections only cause stomach upset but sometimes they can lead to some serious illnesses.

Here are some common pet diseases that we can pick up:

  • Salmonella infection can be contracted from reptile pets such as turtles, lizards and snakes. It is spread by the excretion of these animals.
  • Rabies results from a bite of a rabid dog.
  • Cryptosporidiosis causes abdominal pains and other serious illnesses like pancreatitis. They are waterborne bacteria which can be transferred through ingestion of contaminated water by your pet’s excretion.
  • Campylobacter causes diarrhea, stomach cramps and fever.
  • Toxoplasmosis is an infection spread by cats through their poop which can cause flu-like symptoms. It can also lead to inflammation of the brain. Pregnant women can pass it on to their unborn baby causing birth defects.
  • Roundworms which is very common with puppies can cause fever, headache, stomach pains, and in worse cases, pneumonia and blindness.
  • Parrot fever can be contracted from pet birds such as macaws and cockatiels. The infection is spread by breathing in bacteria from an infected bird’s feces.

Medical experts give us some tips on how to prevent the spread of these infections:

1. Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water after handling pets.

2. Don’t allow children to kiss pets or suck items that have been in contact with pet droppings or urine.

3. Don’t use kitchen sink for washing pets or cages.

4. Clear pet droppings immediately and dispose them off hygienically.

5. Do not dispose pet droppings and urine in a sink, bathtub or shower area.

This does not mean you should get rid of all your pets! Take care of them. Keep them clean. And refrain from remaining in close contact with them for long periods of time, and your pet and your family should be safe.

 

 

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