When we think about getting sick, we think of boxes of tissue, days spent in bed, chicken noodle soup, and, for pet owners, a warm nose snuggled up next to you. Pets have a way of just making a sick day at home that much better. It's a widespread fact that people who have four legged companions live longer, healthier, and happier lives. That being said, there are times that our loving animals feel under the weather along with us. There are many different human and pet illnesses that cannot be passed from one of us to the other. So, if your cat or dog has the sniffles or a cough, it's most likely that you have no worry of catching it—but, there are several illnesses that can be passed from pet to owner and owner to pet. Keep these three illnesses in mind next time you or your pet are feeling ill. Being educated on what can affect your pet and yourself as a pet owner is the best defense.
|Though generally not caused by the same type of mite, both|
humans and animals can become infected with scabies.
Photo credit: scabies-information.com
For the most part, our pet cats and dogs have little to worry about when it comes to mange. Indoor cats that are well kept will very rarely get mange or scabies, but it can be fairly common in dogs. The mange that is also known as scabies is highly contagious to humans and can be contracted by dogs as well. This mange is caused by mites and will appear with symptoms of severe itching, skin irritations, and hair loss. In both dogs and humans, scabies should be treated as quickly as possible. While the illness itself is not immediately threatening, secondary infections can occur quite easily with open sores on the skin. This kind of mange can be avoided with careful hygienic care and some general attentiveness to your pet's skin condition. The mites that cause mange are commonly found on the ears, face, and extremities.
Photo credit: marvistavet.com
While this parasite can be found in any warm-blooded animal, cats are one of the most common pets to come into contact with it. Cats make ideal hosts for the toxoplasmosis parasite. Cats will become infected by preying on infected birds or rodents and will show no symptoms of the disease, making it extremely challenging to detect. Many people are exposed to the disease without ever showing symptoms or even knowing. However, in individuals who have weakened immune systems or are pregnant, toxoplasmosis can cause headache, sore throat, muscle pain, fever, and general malaise. Humans come into contact with this illness through infected kitty litter.
|The classic ring-shaped patches characteristic of ringworm.|
Photo credit: diseasespictures.com
To the surprise of many, ringworm is not actually a worm or parasite, but actually a fungus. The name comes from the commonly ring-shaped display the fungus gives on the skin. Ringworm can be transmitted from pet to human or from human to pet very easily. It is a slow growing fungus that feeds on dead skin cells and the hair of all species of mammal. The most common form of ringworm is often found on young cats and dogs. The spores can be transferred easily from one surface to another. On pets it appears as a dry, oval, scurfy patch of broken fur. This is one of the most common diseases transferred from pet to human and human to pet of all the illnesses on this list. Keep these three things in mind to better care for yourself and your pet.
Today's guest post comes courtesy of Amelia Wood, who often writes about medical billing and coding certification and welcomes your responses at email@example.com.