Zoonotic diseases are those that people can get from animals. Some examples of zoonosis are rabies, ringworm, cat-scratch fever, rat bite fever, salmonellosis, giardia, leptospirosis and worms.

Salmonellosis is a disease caused by the bacterium salmonella. While Salmonella is present in cats and dogs, there are no reported cases of humans contracting Salmonellosis from cats. There is a high concentration of Salmonella in the feces of reptiles (snakes, turtles, and lizards). Humans are most likely to get Salmonellosis from improperly handling raw meat and poor hygiene.

Rat bite fever: rare but a possible disease

Sadly a young boy in San Diego recently died from the Rat-bite fever he contracted from his “pet” purchased at the pet store. It should be mentioned that the pet rat did NOT bite the boy.

According to the CDC, people are at risk for rat-bite fever from a bite, scratch or the simple act of handling an infected rat, mouse or gerbil.

Here are 5 ways to ensure the health of  your pets and family members:

1.  Control Your Pet’s Environment: Clean pet bedding and sanitize their kennel on a regular basis (i.e. each time you give them a bath). Use products to prevent fleas and other insects from infesting your pet and your home.

2.  Dispose of pet waste properly: Each an every time your pet defecates, you need to pick up your pet’s waste and dispose of it in a trash can. Fact: One gram of pet feces contains 23 million bacteria that could spread diseases.

3.  Protect Your Hands: Avoid touching your face & mouth until you thoroughly wash your hands with warm water & soap after handling pets, feces and cat litter. Another option would be to wear protective gloves.

4.  Pregnant women & cat litter: To avoid the possibility of Toxoplasmosis you may consider having someone take over cleaning the kitty litter.

5.  Don’t put out the welcome mat for wildlife: As beautiful as some animals may be, they come with a variety of possible illnesses.

By no means, am I encouraging acts that would hurt or kill animals!

Simple “tricks” such as keeping trash cans properly secured to discourage them from rummaging through your trash and not feeding them may discourage them from coming into your yard.



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Disclaimer: The information contained in this web site is provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose or treat your pet. If your pet has a medical problem, please seek medical attention from your veterinarian. Happy Trails & Wag’n Tails will do our best to ensure that information presented is accurate and up-to-date. Happy Trails & Wag’n Tails does not accept any responsibility for damages, loss or illness which may arise in connection with the use of the information published on this website. The decision to use, or not to use, any information is the sole responsibility of the reader. Opinions expressed here are those of individual contributors. © Happy Trails & Wag’n Tails, 2006-2019. All Rights Reserved.

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