Iowa Officials Confirm Cases of Dog Disease That Can Infect Humans

Dog shelter

Dog shelter

The disease, canine brucellosis, stemmed from "a small dog commercial breeding facility" in Marion County, the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship said in a news release Friday.

Several dogs from a small-dog breeding facility in Iowa have been confirmed to have a disease that can be passed to people, according to state veterinarian Dr. Jeff Kaisand.

Humans can contract Brucellosis "when they are in contact with infected animals or animal products contaminated with the bacteria", according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The department recommends that those who believe they might have come in contact with an infected or exposed dog, visit their primary care physician.

A handout from Iowa State University says, among other things, to "always wash your hands after touching animals".

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Canine Brucellosis is a contagious bacterial infection that can be transferred from dogs to humans, and it has similar side effects for both of them-the disease usually causes flu-like symptoms like a fever, chills, weakness, and fatigue, but can also cause damage to the reproductive organs. "Other signs can include inflammation of lymph nodes, behavioral abnormalities, lethargy, and weight loss". But the good news is, most people are not at high risk for infection. "Arthritis (joint pain) and re-occurring fevers may occur with long term infection". Breeders should wear protective clothing, including gloves and masks, when assisting in the delivery of newborn puppies.

AHeinz57 Pet Rescue & Transport, Inc., an animal rescue organization in De Soto, Iowa, has quarantined 32 dogs purchased at an auction from a breeder while they undergo testing.

"We have not received any results yet", the organization posted on Facebook.

"Persons with a weakened immune system due to disease or medication, young children, and pregnant women are likely at greater risk of developing more severe symptoms if they are exposed", the Department said in a notice.

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