Horrifying diseases you can catch from your pet!

Catch these diseases before they catch you!

Not all animal diseases are transmissible to humans, but some can jump between species. Here are 32 diseases that you can catch from animals like cats, dogs, birds, cattle, and even pigs. Some of these diseases can be caught from eating contaminated meat, touching surfaces or through fluids and aerosols. From rabies to fish tank granuloma, here are 32 diseases that you can catch from animals… but hopefully won't.

  1. Rabies - This nervous system ailment is transmitted when an infected animal bites another animal, or a person. Out of all known human deaths from rabies, dogs are responsible for nearly 99 percent of them.
  2. Trichinosis - Eating undercooked or raw meat with the larvae of the roundworm Trichinella spiralis can cause this disease. The CDC reports that bears, cougars, wild boars, and pigs are more susceptible to carrying this disease. Diagnose trichinosis with a blood test or muscle biopsy, and treat it with prescription medications.
  3. Cat Scratch Disease - Bacteria called Bartonella henselae cause this disease, which cats can transmit to humans via scratches or bites. Most people don't show any symptoms after being infected and get better without treatment.
  4. Ancylostoma caninum - This parasite causes hookworm infections in dogs and cats, and can be transmitted to humans. Also known as "cutaneous larva migrans," it causes redness and itching, and can form red tracks on the skin.
  5. Bird flu - Avian influenza type A viruses cause this disease, which can lead to mild symptoms like flu or cold, and can progress to severe symptoms, including fever, body aches, nausea, and diarrhea.
  6. Herpes B - This rare virus is transmitted through contact with macaque monkeys. The herpes B virus can be transmitted when an infected monkey bites or scratches a person.
  7. Fish tank granuloma - This skin infection is caused by Mycobacterium marinum, and can be picked up from handling fish tanks or shucking oysters. The bacteria enter through the skin and can be found in stagnant saltwater and freshwater.
  8. Bubonic plague - Caused by the bacteria Yersinia pestis, this disease still occurs today and can be transmitted via contaminated fluids or tissues of rodents, squirrels, and other animals. Insect bites, such as fleas, can also spread the plague.
  9. Cysticercosis - This parasitic infection occurs when people ingest the eggs of the tapeworm Taenia solium. The CDC reports that this infection can be contracted by ingesting undercooked or raw pork.
  10. Ebola - This disease, which affects primates, fruit bats, forest antelope, and porcupines, can be transmitted to humans via contact with contaminated fluids or organs of these animals. Ebola causes rapid dementia and neuromuscular disturbances that quickly get worse.
  11. Lyme disease - Tick bites can transmit the bacteria that causes Lyme disease. In the U.S., the bacterial culprit is typically Borrelia burgdorferi, but B. mayonii is sometimes to blame. Antibiotics may help treat the infection.
  12. Brucellosis - This infection is caused by the bacteria Brucella and can be contracted by eating or drinking unpasteurized dairy products or through open wounds. Those who work with the bacteria in labs are more vulnerable to catching it.
  13. Mad cow disease - This disease, which affects cattle, is caused by prions and can cause progressive neurological problems in animals. Humans can catch it by eating food products made from infected cattle, which can lead to rapid dementia and neuromuscular disturbances that quickly get worse.
  14. Toxocariasis - This parasite can be transmitted from dogs and cats to humans, though it can't be spread from one human to another. The parasite's eggs are shed in the animals' feces and can be swallowed accidentally. Sometimes, this infection has no symptoms.
  15. Echinococcosis - This parasitic disease is caused by a tapeworm in the genus Echinococcus. The infection is classified as cystic echinococcosis (CE) or alveolar echinococcosis (AE). The E. granulosus tapeworm that causes CE is found in dogs, sheep, goats, and pigs. Most people with CE don't have symptoms, though it can lead to enlarged cysts in the liver, lungs, and other organs.

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