Many pet owners aren't aware of the illnesses their pets can get; not only that, but what can they transmit to us?
We often hear clients asking why it is important to vaccinate and to treat their animals for parasites? Many people don't know that certain illnesses can be transmitted to us! There are viruses, fungus, parasites, bacteria, and we can all share them, so it is part of our job not only to ensure the health of the animal but also the owner's family.
The most common illnesses we see that humans get from their pets are fungus and parasites, the most common being ringworm and internal parasites.
But there are many more that humans can get, here are some that could frequent this area, as worldwide there are many more. This doesn't mean that you and your pet are going to get these, but with prevention we can all feel much safer.
Rabies is infamous, it is transmitted by the saliva of an infected animal and its outcome is very severe. It is prevented by keeping your pet's vaccination up to date, it is compulsory to vaccinate Dogs, Cats and Ferrets against rabies.
Leishmaniosis, is transmitted by the bite of an infected phlebotomine sandfly. There are many preventative measures such as vaccination, external parasite treatments, and immunity booster treatments, and although it is very uncommon in humans, it can affect us.
Toxoplasmosis, is transmitted by cat faeces and unclean fruit and vegetables. To prevent against toxoplasmosis the best way is hygiene; make sure your hands and all tools used to clean the cat litter are properly cleaned, and wash your fruit and vegetables before consuming them.
Dirofilariosis is transmitted by mosquitoes. Commonly known as heart worm, to prevent it we can use external parasite treatments and a wide spectrum worming pill.There are also specific treatments for heart worm, and depending on the area you live in, this can be more or less common.
Leptospirosis is transmitted by urine of an infected animal and as most dogs like to sniff, it is easily caught and passed around. Most dogs are vaccinated against it in their yearly injection, which is why these are so important.
Lyme disease, Hepatozoonosis, Ehrlichiosis, Babesiosis and Rickettsiosis, these are all transmitted by ticks. Hepatozoonosis differs as it's transmitted by the ingestion of a tick, where the others are from its bite. The best preventative measure is a good external parasite treatment, also there are blood tests to detect these especially if your pet has recently had an infestation of ticks.
Internal Parasites such as Giardia, Toxocara Gati, Toxocara Canis, Echinococcus (tape worm) and many others can also be transmitted, which is why it is compulsory to worm your pet once a year; in fact worming is advisable at least every 3 months, as these can all be transmitted to humans.
We recommend you always consult with a professional such as a veterinary or veterinary assistant as to which are the best parasite treatments as they will be able to advise medically which are the most suited and most effective for each individual pet. Many pet store parasite treatments have no scientific study to back their effectiveness, as the law doesn’t allow them to administer veterinary medication.
Article supplied by Clinica Veterinaria El Puerto in Jávea. See their advert above for their contact details.