Contact With Puppies Source of Drug-Resistant Infections

Contact With Puppies Source of Drug-Resistant Infections


A multi-drug resistant infection has been reported in 13 states that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has linked to contact with puppies. The virus, Campylobacter, can cause fever, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps.

Of the 30 people who have contracted the illness, 15 out of the 24 interviewed have reported contact with puppies at a pet store.

Pet Store Link

The largest number of cases was recorded in Minnesota, which had 6 reported infections. Ohio had 5 cases, and Nevada has seen 4 cases of Campylobacter. 80% of the 24 people who were interviewed had contact with puppies at a particular pet store chain: Petland. While the chain does not operate stores in states where more than a third of the cases have been reported, the CDC is still urging people to take precautions.

Christmas is a popular time of year for families to adopt or buy puppies. Even if you don’t take one home, simply having contact with puppies or dogs who have the virus can lead to illness. The CDC has issued precautions that you can take when you are visiting dogs or bring a new pet home.

Puppy Contact Precautions

When you have contact with a puppy, the CDC recommends advises that you wash your hands thoroughly after touching them, their food, or their feces.

Pick up and dispose of dog poop, particularly in areas where children play.

Last but not least, if your dog displays any systems of Campylobacter, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Campylobacter Symptoms

Puppies and dogs display almost the same symptoms as people who have contracted the illness. Typical symptoms include a watery diarrhea, lethargy, fever, and abdominal cramping or pain. In dogs, diarrhea caused by the infection can last a week or more. If you suspect your dog has the virus, your veterinarian can treat them with antibiotics.

In humans, the illness is multi-drug resistant, which could cause more serious health complications, including hospitalization. Of the 30 cases reported thus far, 4 of them have been hospitalized.

If you are visiting dogs this holiday season, or bring home a new furry friend, take precautions and visit your doctor if you suspect you may have the virus.