Zoonotic Diseases

I saw in the news a report of a person getting Brucellosis from a dog.  As an animal welfare worker, you should already know that you live in a world of animal diseases and some of those diseases can be passed along to you; that is the definition of a zoonotic disease.

From time to time we need to refresh our memories as to this particular aspect of our profession; I was constantly reminded by the staff who loved to go from animal to animal getting doggie kisses.  We preach about fomites (the spread of disease through our hands and clothing) only to see employees spreading it through their mouths.  I get it, it hard to be in this profession and not surrender to a few kisses.  But like your hands, wash your face between kisses.

Animal Shelter staff and the public are the primary vector for spreading diseases within an animal shelter.  It is bad enough that we spread the diseases between animals, but we need to be sensitive to the diseases that we can give to ourselves.

I would like to share an article by Jill Seladi-Schulman, PhD on zoonosis.  We all should practice safe animal handling.