Health Tip: Pets Can Carry Disease

Make sure they're healthy

(HealthDay News) -- Regardless of how much you love your dog or cat, these and other animals can still transmit certain diseases to you and your family.

Diseases like E. coli, salmonellosis, toxoplasmosis, tuberculosis and rabies can be passed from animals to humans. And they can be deadly if left untreated, according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Here's how to protect yourself:

  • Have a veterinarian check your pet.
  • Set up a schedule of immunizations and de-worming for your pet.
  • Keep your pet clean and well-groomed, and trim its claws regularly.
  • Use disposable gloves when cleaning cages, litter boxes, animal pens and fish tanks.
  • Don't use pet waste as fertilizer.
  • Wash your hands with soap and hot water for 20 seconds immediately after handling, petting or cleaning up after animals.
  • Don't let your pets eat raw meat, drink from the toilet bowl, or dig through the garbage.
  • Keep your pets away from food preparation areas.
Consumer News