How To Avoid Getting Sick From Your Pet


Everyone loves their pet. The idea you may become sick from your pet is something most people rarely consider.

Seniors, young children, those with compromised immune systems and pregnant women are most susceptible to getting sick from their pet.

You want to take sensible precautions to avoid getting sick from your pet.

After having contact with your pet thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water.

When you are cleaning up the feces from your pet wear plastic gloves. Place the dog feces into a plastic bag for disposal. Do not touch it with your bare hands. If cleaning the litter box for the cat use a slotted scoop to clean the waste and then dispose of it. Pregnant women should avoid cleaning the cat litter box. Cats feces may carry a parasite that causes enlarged lymph nodes. If a pregnant woman becomes infected she may show no signs or symptoms of an illness, but it can be transmitted to the fetus she is carrying.

Socialize your pets so they are comfortable interacting with people. This will lessen the change you will be accidentally scratched or bitten by your pet.


If you are working in the garden where there may be waste from your pet be sure to wash your hands with soap and water frequently.

If your pet accidentally bites or scratches you wash the area thoroughly with soap and water. If you see any redness or swelling consult your health care professional.

If you receive a puncture wound from your pet consult your health care professional. The dog or cat may appear healthy but still may transmit organisms that cause illness once they have penetrated your skin. The most common saliva borne germs from a cat or dog is rabies. This should not be a concern since legally all pets need to be vaccinated against rabies. However, if you are injured by a wild or unknown animal you cannot be sure what may have been transmitted to you.

Cats can transfer a bacteria from their mouth to their claws. It is possible to get a case of cat scratch disease from a bite or scratch. Although this usually causes only localized lymph node swelling near the injury it can lead to much more serious medical problems affecting the central nervous system, eyes or liver.

Fleas and ticks prefer to live on furrier animals, but they will go from your pet to feed on you. These insects may cause Lyme and other diseases. Use a preparation recommended by your veterinarian to control fleas or ticks on your pet. If you home is infected with fleas or ticks treat this area too. Even if they are being treated with a flea and tick preventative check your pet regularly to be sure they are not infected. If you find a tick remove it and then wash your hands with soap and water.

When you have a pet you need to launder their bedding frequently.

If you have birds as pets clear their cages daily. If your pet is a rodent clean their cages frequently. Wear disposable gloves and a face mask when cleaning these cages.

Take your pet to the vet for a physical annually. Make sure you keep the vaccinations and shots up to date. At the first sign of illness take your pet to the vet.

By using common sense, following a few precautions and seeing your pet has regular veterinarian care your chances of becoming sick from your pet are low.