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7 Zoonotic Diseases You Should Know About

Update Time:2023/10/20
With the change of living conditions, more and more people begin to keep pets, pets become an important member of the family, and even sleep with the owner. While pets are good for human health in many ways, they also have the power to make their loving owners sick. Recently, we have received a lot of inquiries from pet owners about Zoonotic disease.Zoonotic disease is any infectious disease that can be transmitted from animals to humans or from humans to animals

1. Roundworms, hookworms, and tapeworms

Symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, weight loss

Dogs and cats often carry intestinal parasites, including roundworms and hookworms. These parasites are more common in puppies and kittens, as well as pets that spend a lot of time outside. According to the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, worm eggs and larvae are transmitted through the feces of animals.

Advice: Therefore, it is important to maintain good hygiene after handling pets or touching animals that may have parasitic diseases. In addition, the best thing to do is to test and deworm any new pet or one that shows symptoms of parasites as soon as possible.

2. Cat scratch fever

Symptoms: Swelling or water at the bite or scratch site, swollen lymph nodes, fever, headache, muscle soreness and joint fatigue, loss of appetite

Being scratched by a cat can be painful, but it can be even worse when accompanied by the bacterium Bartonella henselae. According to Cornell University's College of Veterinary Medicine, "This bacterial infection is usually transmitted from cats to humans through scratches, but sometimes it can also be transmitted through bites and cats licking open wounds." About 40% of cats carry Bartonella henselae, although many do not show any symptoms. Cats carry the bacteria because of flea bites.

Advice: Therefore, keeping the cat indoors helps reduce the risk of cat scratch disease, while monitoring the cat's behavior to avoid bites and scratches, and washing hands after playing with the cat.

Symptoms: Diarrhea or greasy stools, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, dehydration

Both cats and dogs can transmit the parasite Giardiasis through their feces. According to PetMD, people often contract it through contaminated food and water. Symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhoea, bloating, vomiting, fever and anorexia can last for one to two weeks after infection.

Advice: Pay attention to food hygiene, strengthen water protection is an important measure to prevent the disease, to avoid pets in contact with drinking water. Water should be boiled before drinking.

4. Toxoplasmosis

Symptoms: muscle aches, fever, headache, confusion, seizures, vomiting, diarrhea

Most cat owners are probably aware of toxoplasmosis, a parasitic disease that cats can transmit through their feces. According to a Cornell University study, free-range cats feed on infected wild animals for parasites that can survive in the environment for months. Also, infected cats often don't show symptoms, so you may not know you're at risk.

Advice: Therefore, it is important to practice good hygiene when cleaning cat litter or working in a potentially contaminated environment, such as a garden.

Symptoms: Flu-like symptoms, including fever, headache, muscle aches, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting

Leptospirosis is a potentially serious bacterial infection that is spread through water or urine. Dogs can become infected from the environment by drinking contaminated water or coming into contact with infected animals. According to the World Veterinary Association, "symptoms in dogs include fever, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, refusal to eat, severe weakness and depression, kidney disease and liver dysfunction". Fortunately, a vaccine for dogs can protect them.

Advice:The sick pet should be treated in real time, children should be prevented from close contact with domestic animals, children should be educated not to play in the infected water, take a bath, and patients should be isolated and treated in real time. Leptospirosis polyvalent vaccine can be inoculated for susceptible patients.


Symptoms: Swelling, redness, pain, dry hot skin

Pasteurella is a bacterium commonly found in the upper respiratory tract of cats and dogs. According to the Journal of Medicine and Life, Pasteurella infections can be transmitted to humans through direct and indirect contact, such as a dog or cat bite or lick, or even a cat scratch. It usually presents as a local skin infection. There have been a few manifestations of respiratory inflammation, local abscess, otitis media, sinusitis. A Cornell University study has shown that bacteria can cross the bloodstream and cause serious complications, including infection of heart valves.

Advice:It is right to go to the hospital for treatment after finding suspected infection.

Symptoms: Diarrhea, fever, stomach pain

You probably already know that reptiles and amphibians often carry Salmonella. But dogs and cats can also become hosts and pass them on to us through their feces. Cornell University research shows that dogs and cats get salmonella from their environment and diet, especially when they eat raw meat.

Advice:  Fortunately, most healthy pets and people can recover from the infection on their own, but some people may need medical attention if symptoms are severe.

How to prevent you and your pet from getting sick

While cats and dogs can transmit diseases to humans, experts tell you to remember that the World Veterinary Association offers these ways to prevent pets from making you sick.

1. Keep your pet healthy, such as vaccinations, physical examinations and deworming, as healthy pets are less likely to contract diseases in the first place. Also, keep yourself healthy so that your immune system can fight anything your pet may be carrying.

2. Maintain good sanitary conditions when handling pet waste and educate children about the importance of this.

3. Don't let pets sit on garbage, and pick up your dog as soon as possible. And keep your cat's box clean.

4. Wash your hands after touching your pet or its supplies, especially before you eat anything.

5. Avoid contact with stray dogs, cats or wild animals.

Of course, at the first sign of any illness, take your pet to a pet doctor so they can continue to be with you for years to come.