Exotic Pets and zoonotic disease
You most likely already know that humans can catch diseases from wild animals. You probably also thought about the diseases that we can get through our interactions with Pets. However, if You have, or You are considering getting an exotic pet, You should take into account the specific diseases associated with them. Just like in dogs and cats, exotic Pets, there are some zoonotic diseases (diseases transmitted between humans and animals). Having an exotic pet, You are more at risk for zoonotic infections than when You have a dog or a cat; it just puts You in danger of other types of diseases. With good hygiene and proper care there is a very low risk of getting disease from Your exotic pet. However, it is very good to know about a potential infectious risk, which is Your pet.
In this article we will address some frequent and some rare diseases that can be transmitted to humans from exotic Pets. You should be aware of these diseases before buying an exotic pet. As with all Pets, you must be very careful in households with children or people with weakened immune systems. Every time You go to the doctor with the disease, You should always mention that You have Pets. Although a serious disease caused by a zoonotic disease, occurs infrequently, the knowledge that You have Pets, is very important information for Your doctor. Salmonellosis — the disease caused by the bacterium Salmonella, which is commonly found in reptiles and amphibians. Up to 90 % of reptiles and amphibians carry the bacteria in their gut, not detecting signs of the disease. These bacteria are difficult to verify. They are hidden in the feces and are transmitted to humans directly from the pet or through something, than contact your pet. It is very important to change the water regularly, wash hands after contact with a pet, and to properly disinfect the environment. The infection with Salmonella usually causes gastrointestinal symptoms (such as diarrhoea) in adults but can be fatal in children.
The for Giardia is the simplest animal that can be transmitted from all Pets, including cats and dogs. Sources of Giardia include water and contact with infected animals. In humans and animals, for Giardia causing gastrointestinal symptoms, although almost half of the infected people do not reveal the symptoms. The for Giardia can be fatal in chinchillas. In veterinary clinics available special test for Giardia.
Ringworm is a skin disease caused by fungi, and can occur in all mammalian Pets (including dogs, cats, rats, Guinea pigs, rabbits and ferrets). Most often, the fungus causes ringworm is easily identifiable infection of the skin. Ringworm causes itchy skin and hair loss and in people and in animals. It is transmitted through skin-to-skin contact. Another skin disease – tick-borne disease called scabies. Scabies is also found in mammals, domestic animals and is transmitted through skin-to-skin contact. It causes itchy skin and often associated with secondary infections. Psittacosis is a disease caused by bacteria psittacosis Chlamydophila, and you can get it from birds of the family of parrots and some wild birds. Symptoms in birds include: bloodshot eyes, complicate breathing and watery bowel movements. However, birds can identify strong or weak signs, or do not reveal any symptoms. The bacteria are spread through feces and nasal discharge. This causes the changing of complicated symptoms, such symptoms of pneumonia in humans. It was reported about a very small amount of fever, but bird owners must keep in mind that they are under greater risk than the General population.
Some diseases in birds which You can hear, actually extremely rare in birds-Pets, and are most often found in wild birds and poultry. They include M. tuberculosis, Newcastle disease and campylobacteria.
Cheilitis — an unusual mite, found mainly in rabbits, but can occur in all mammalian Pets. The appearance of galatioto gives him the name ‘walking dandruff’, and it usually does not cause itchy skin or hair loss in rabbits. Therefore, it often remains undetected for the owner. It causes itching of the skin in humans, but because they do not can be restored to the people, over time it will simply cease to exist on the skin.
Pasteurella — a common bacteria found in the respiratory tract of rabbits. Some species can cause serious upper respiratory infection, but most rabbits do not reveal symptoms. It is transmitted through bites and scratches, and can cause fever, vomiting and chills in humans. A very similar disease is caused by moniliforme streptobacilli, which is transmitted by bites and scratches from rodents. It is called the ‘rat bite fever’. Rabies is always considered for Pets. Although it is unlikely that pet will become infected with rabies, the disease is fatal in humans and animals and should be mentioned. There is a rabies vaccination is available for ferrets. Another very unlikely the disease — avian influenza. This is mainly a problem for poultry in parts of Asia. But as the owner of the birds, You must understand the concern in the scientific community that you may receive the variant, which can be transmitted to humans. Since we had never been to this, it can have serious consequences. In this case, it’s not a problem for birds as Pets.
As with all Pets, there is also the problem of allergies. Although it is not a ‘disease’, allergic to feathers, dust, irritation, animal feed and litter must always be considered before buying a pet.
Although very rarely You can catch a disease from Your exotic pet, that’s a risk You have to understand. Houses with children and people with weakened immune systems should be especially careful with Pets. Treating Your pet and its environment properly, You greatly reduce the chance of disease transmission. Remember that the risk of Contracting an illness from Your pet should be a major basis for good care for him and should not prevent You from having an exotic pet.