Health officials have recommended puppies be banned from aged care facilities after two outbreaks of Campylobacter gastroenteritis in a Canberra nursing home.
But trained adult dogs will still be able to visit aged care homes.
The Age reports a paper to be presented at a Communicable Diseases Conference in Canberra on Tuesday will outline how15 people were infected during two separate gastroenteritis outbreaks in the nursing home between April and June last year.
A healthy four-month-old puppy was identified as the likely cause of the outbreaks and excluded from the facility.
”Campylobacter jejuni was recovered from both human and canine faecal samples,” the study findings said.
”A review of published literature showed puppies extensively shed Campylobacter species.
”The [aged care] setting and low infective dose also made transmission likely, despite the varying degrees of contact between the puppy and cases.
”While infection control practices were generally appropriate, the facility’s animal policy did not adequately address potential zoonotic risk.”