Salmonella can come from pets

Yesterday, a local story in a county newspaper in Texas carried the headline, “Salmonella can come from pets.”

The story reported,

“Three cases of salmonella among children in Lubbock County since December 2008 are likely the result of exposure to reptiles, said Judy Davis, a spokeswoman for the city of Lubbock health department.”

The spokeswoman explained that handwashing is the key to preventing salmonella associated with reptiles and amphibians, such as snakes and turtles.

I just wanted to point out that, although less of a problem, handwashing is also important for preventing salmonella infections from furry pets.

In 1999, the CDC received reports from three state health departments of outbreaks of multidrug-resistant Salmonella serotype Typhimurium infections in employees and clients of small animal veterinary clinics and an animal shelter.

The CDC’s report stated,

“Salmonella infections usually are acquired by eating contaminated food [including produce and peanut butter]; however, direct contact with infected animals, including dogs and cats, also can result in exposure and infection.”

Doug and Phebus, at the end of the lengthy video (from September 2008) below, also recommend washing your hands after handling food and treats for your pets… especially when they’ve been recalled.