People really love their pets. Some people go so far as to think of them like children, kissing and cuddling them, sharing beds, baths, couches and even dinner plates with them. That kind of love is admirable, though perhaps a little unusual for some, while others spare no expense when it comes to the comfort and well-being of their animal companions. There’s nothing wrong with that if you think of pets as part of the family. Unfortunately, when you’re that close to your pets, not everything you share with them is positive, just like sharing with other family members.
You see, just like you can get sick after someone else in the household comes down with a cold, you could end up sharing more than love and kisses with your pet. Chances are, we all know one person who gets grossed out when a dog licks their face, and chances are we also know a person who laughs and doesn’t mind. While contact with pets more often than not is harmless, it is not impossible for them to pass certain diseases to their human companions. Here are a few examples of illnesses pets can transmit to humans.
5. Stomach Bugs
It’s not uncommon to have an upset stomach. The aches, the fever, the vomiting, the diarrhea…it can be rather unpleasant. Did you know that you can catch it from your canine and feline companions? If you handle their feces at all (someone has to do it, right?), there’s a remote chance that you could pick up an infection. It comes from a bacterium in the feces called Campylobacter jejuni that is responsible for quite a number of human illnesses. Of course, you should wash your hands after handling poop, but also be mindful of anywhere your pets wipe their bums.
4. Cat Scratch Fever
Now, it’s pretty safe to say that most people don’t enjoy being clawed by their pets. At least with this particular illness, you have an idea of where the culprit lies. While it is generally transmitted to humans via cat scratch, it comes from the feces of fleas, which are transmitted to cat claws when they scratch themselves. Cat scratch fever is caused by a bacterium known as Bartonella. The infection will bring on fever and swell the lymph nodes. Make sure you keep your furry friends tick and flea free, as it will protect your health, too.