Navigation Links
Your Pet's Food Dish Could Serve Up Salmonella
Date:8/9/2010

By Amanda Gardner
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Aug. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Dry pet food may be a little-known source of Salmonella bacterial infection among humans, and young children seem to be especially at risk, a new study finds.

The authors of the study say they tracked a 2006-2008 Salmonella outbreak that sickened 79 American patients -- about half of them 2 years old or younger -- to household use of dry cat and dog food.

"It's a tough thing because pets are not symptomatic like we are and can shed this [bacterium] for up to 10 to 12 weeks" in their feces, said Dr. Peter Richel, chief of pediatrics at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, N.Y., who is familiar with the findings. "It is a little disconcerting to hear that otherwise benign-appearing pet food can pose any risk at all."

The issue has made headlines in recent days with several varieties of Iams and Eukanuba dog and cat food recalled last week due to potential Salmonella contamination. The manufacturer, Procter & Gamble, says no cases of human Salmonella have yet been linked to these products.

The proportion of people who fell ill from contaminated pet food in the 21-state outbreak covered by the new study was small, but the fact that the food-borne illness affected young children so drastically is troubling, experts said.

Salmonella, a food-borne illness, can be serious in infants and the elderly.

Reporting in the September issue of Pediatrics, researchers led by Dr. Casey Barton Behravesh of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that contact with pets and contact with the pet's environment -- their bed and where they eat and sleep, for example -- can result in human infections.

Feeding pets in the kitchen quadrupled the risk of illness, although "the reasons for that are a little unclear," said Dr. Timothy Pfanner, assistant professor of internal medicine at Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine and a gastroenterologist with Scott & White Healthcare in Temple, Texas.

"It looks like the bacteria multiply either on the floor of the kitchen, or I suspect people don't clean their dog bowls," said Pfanner, who was not involved in the study.

On the other hand, the researchers found that children who actually put pet food into their mouth seemed to have no added risk.

The Pennsylvania plant where the contaminated pet food was manufactured was eventually closed, the researchers note. However, they add that since 2006, at least 135 pet products, including pet supplements and pigs' ears, have been recalled as a result of Salmonella contamination.

This new study, "re-emphasizes the importance of washing your hands whenever you deal with anything from a pet, including petting him, touching his mouth or cleaning up after him, especially for children whose immune systems are very weak in comparison to adults," said Dr. Philip Tierno, clinical professor of microbiology and pathology at New York University Langone Medical Center in New York City and author of The Secret Life of Germs.

"Hand washing is the single most important thing anyone can do to protect their health, and that's within everyone's purview if you teach them," Tierno said. "You can do that and not be afraid."

Another precaution is to have well-packaged, well-stored pet food, keeping it out of the reach of infants and toddlers, said Richel.

"This is a small section of total cases of Salmonella, but it's important because so many of our kids are on the floor all the time," said Pfanner.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on Salmonella.

SOURCES: Timothy Pfanner, M.D., assistant professor of internal medicine, Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, and gastroenterologist, Scott & White, Temple, Texas; Pete Richel, M.D., chief of pediatrics, Northern Westchester Hospital, Mt. Kisco, N.Y.; Philip M. Tierno, Jr., M.D., clinical professor of microbiology and pathology, New York University Langone Medical Center, New York, N.Y., and author The Secret Life of Germs; September 2010 Pediatrics, online Aug. 9


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Pets Guardian Provides A Pet Safety System, Ensuring Pets Will Be Cared For In Case of a Personal Emergency
2. Where Do Pets Go When They Dream?
3. Caring for Diabetic Pets Helps Humans Get Healthier
4. Trupanion Emphasizes the Importance of Pet Insurance for Small Pets
5. Artificial Legs Now a Reality for Pets
6. New England Journal of Medicine Article Trumpets “Priority” Status of Helping Patients Take Medications Correctly
7. The Bella Moss Foundation Announces U.S. Tour to Raise Awareness of MRSA in Pets
8. Pet Dental Month Prime Time To Schedule Preventive Annual Cleaning For Pets
9. Study finds proximity could be key to success of healing prayer
10. New imaging technique could help physicians ease the aftermath of breast cancer
11. Pilot safety protocol could help dentists reduce errors
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Your Pet's Food Dish Could Serve Up Salmonella
(Date:2/13/2016)... Montreal, Canada (PRWEB) , ... February 13, 2016 , ... ... best foot forward. They’ll groom themselves to perfection, go out of their way to ... their date – just take a look at any online dating profile. , ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... DC (PRWEB) , ... February ... ... Siemens Foundation today announced a new initiative—the Siemens Foundation-PATH Ingenuity Fellowships—to develop ... The partnership will recruit top students from U.S. universities who will draw ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... , ... February 12, 2016 , ... As a former ... schedule, a demanding job, and no time to decompress, Rabinowitz found herself drawn to ... to meditation for its impact on her life, implementing a 20-minute-per-day meditation practice with ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... Every winter, someone is killed, ... the West Penn Burn Center, part of the Allegheny Health Network, has ... bring you the “Space Heaters Need Space” campaign. , “Space Heaters Need ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... Erlanger Agency has announced a new partnership in ... latest campaign focuses on the fight against breast cancer, fundraising for a local woman ... here . , Carmen is a loving single mother of two boys who also ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... 11, 2016 Stem cells are primitive cells ... self-renewal and the capacity to differentiate into mature cell ... as the first mouse embryonic stem cells were derived ... 1995 that the first culturing of embryonic stem cells ... not produced until 2006 As a result of these ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... 2016  Walgreens has committed to provide drug disposal ... Washington, D.C. as part of a program ... by shareholder advocacy organization As You Sow. Conrad ... people hold on to unneeded drugs because they lack easily ... --> Conrad MacKerron , Senior Vice President ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... Feb. 11, 2016  NOIT™ Research LLC, a private, ... of Change" campaign to assist needy families in obtaining ... unit sold between February 10, 2016 and March 31, ... needy family. The NOIT is an auditory stimulus that ... develop language skills. Beth Shier , ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: