Dog disease that can jump to humans was found in Iowa

05/14/2019 04:09 | 8

Dog disease that can jump to humans was found in Iowa

Iowa has confirmed multiple cases of a disease that can be transmitted from dogs to humans and can pose numerous health risks ranging from fever to exhaustion and inflammation of lymph nodes.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship advise all animal owners to thoroughly wash hands after handling pets-even household ones-to prevent infection.

Brucellosis is a zoonotic disease humans can contract "when they are in contact with infected animals or animal products contaminated with the bacteria", according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Iowa health officials advise anyone who "recently acquired a new, small breed dog" from Marion County to contact their veterinarian.

Heinz said someone contacted them about the auction and said this particular commercial breeder was closing and would have some of the older dogs up for adoption, which is why they made a decision to attend.

Signs of the disease in a dog include infertility, spontaneous abortions and stillbirths.

Humans infected with the disease, according to The Mayo Clinic, can expect to "take antibiotics for at least six weeks". "Arthritis (joint pain) and re-occurring fevers may occur with long term infection".

Canine brucellosis can cause reproductive failure in dogs and can be passed to humans through "direct contact or aerosol exposure to infected animal fluids", according to a fact sheet from Iowa State University.

Another buyer that purchased dogs from the same breeder discovered that several of the animals had tested positive for canine brucellosis.

The disease can survive for months but can be eliminated with heat and disinfectants. "We also issued quarantines to make sure that we stop the spread of the disease", Kaisand said. "Therefore, we have closed our shelter building for the next 30 days".

"Persons with a weakened immune system due to disease or medication, young children, and pregnant women are likely at greater risk of developing more severe symptoms if they are exposed", the Department said in a notice.

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