Make Sure you Are Aware that Your Dog Can Transmit Infections

Pooch

Dogs are man’s best friend and for many good reasons.  These cute four-legged creatures are loyal companion and give us lots of love and happiness.  It’s no wonder many dog lovers around the world are letting their pup/s get in the bed with them.  But before you let your pooch in the bed with you, you need to know that they can carry infections.  Yes, you read it right!  Pets like dogs and cats can transmit diseases especially through kisses.  Salmonella is a multi-drug resistant bacteria that can be transmitted by cats, dogs, reptiles and amphibians.  Parasites like hookworm and toxoplasma can be transmitted as well by the above pets.

The bacteria, virus and parasites can be transmitted from dogs (and other pets such as cats) to humans through direct contact with saliva and feces, bite and scratch.  Amphibians and reptiles can transmit diseases through contact with contaminated areas and surfaces.  Staph infections, plague and meningitis are some of the conditions that we can get.  Hookworms and roundworms are the typical parasites that we can contract from dogs.  These parasites can cause anemia and gastrointestinal problems.  The most common infection that human get from pet licks is Pasteurella multocida.  This infection has been known to cause mild respiratory issues and serious conditions like pneumonia and endocarditis.

In order to prevent the transmission of infections, pet parents are advised to take precautionary measures.  Below is a list of safety measures that any pet parents should do.

  1. Wear protective gears. Always wear gloves whenever you clean your pet’s house and handle feces.
  2. Wash your hands thoroughly after pet contact.
  3. Discourage your pet (dog and cat) from licking your face and giving you smooches. This is because there are bacteria that live in the mouth of dogs and cats that can be passed on to us through kisses and licks.
  4. Regularly clean and disinfect areas where your pet eat, play and sleep.
  5. Always take your pet for regular vet checkups.

Having pets can provide us stress relief and happiness but we also need to be aware of the risk that our pup can pass on infections.  And with that, we need to practice good hygiene habits to keep ourselves and our pet healthy.

Image via MSVG at Flickr.com

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