Diseases Caused By Pets

Diseases Caused By Pets

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LARVA MIGRANS (ROUNDWORM) – Caused by a child eating soil contaminated with feces from puppies or kittens. Treated with medication taken orally.

TOXOPLASMOSIS – Caused by a parasite transmitted when a child cleans a kitten’s litter box or otherwise handles cat feces. Symptoms include muscle pain, swollen lymph glands, and skin rash. Toxoplasmosis in a more severe form can be transmitted by an infected mother passing on the disease in her bloodstream to the unborn child, through the placenta. Antibiotics can prevent on-going infection in the mother but will not prevent damage to the unborn child.

PASTEURELLA – Caused by bacteria entering the child’s body through cat or dog bites. Usually treated with antibiotics.

SALMONELLOSIS – Caused by bacteria often carried by pet turtles and other pets. Symptoms include fever, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Treatment includes antibiotics for children under 1 year. In older children the disease is usually self-limited and requires no antibiotics.

PSITTACOSIS – Caused by a germ carried in the droppings of infected birds, usually tropical birds such as parrots, macaws, or parakeets. Treated with antibiotics.



LEPTOSPIROSIS – Caused by a germ in urine of infected dogs. Symptoms include fever, headache, muscle aches, nausea and vomiting, cramps, chills, and red eyes. Treatment requires antibiotics.




From the Complete Guide to Pediatric Symptoms, Illness & Medications by H. Winter Griffith, M.D. © 1989 The Putnam Berkley Group, Inc.; electronic rights by Medical Data Exchange

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