CDC Warns People Against Salmonella Illness Associated with Hedgehogs

The federal government is warning Americans not to kiss or snuggle hedgehogs citing salmonella infection. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued the notice on Friday. In recent years, people adopted the tiny and prickly mammals as pets. But CDC suspects they may carry salmonella germs and spread this infection to nearby humans. According to the CDC, 11 people in eight states have been affected by a salmonella epidemic. The cases are probably related to hedgehogs, the household pets. The healthcare agency announced that a study indicates that contact with pet hedgehogs is a probable source of the current epidemic. The federal health agency says 10 out of 11 salmonella affected people had contact with their pet before the illness.

No adverse cases or deaths have been reported amid the outbreak. However, the salmonella outbreak includes the same strain associated with a man’s death in 2013. The illness easily captures the people with weak immunity. Till date, cases affected by the epidemic emerged in Maine, Mississippi, Colorado, Minnesota, Missouri, Texas, Wyoming, and Nebraska. Three of the patients belong to Missouri; two of them live in Minnesota. In addition to this, the remaining location has one victim respectively.

According to the CDC, hedgehogs may seem hygienic and tidy, but they can transfer traces of salmonella in their droppings. The bacteria can then spread to their bodies, habitats, anywhere in the house. Those who have the household pets are suggested to always wash hands after touching or caring for a hedgehog. The CDC warns not to kiss or snuggle those pets, as it may introduce your face and mouth with germs. Researchers also collected samples from the pets from the homes of two Minnesota patients. The investigation resulted in the strain of salmonella that affected the health of people. Symptoms of salmonella include fever, diarrhea, and cramps in the stomach. The abdominal pain and symptoms may persist up to 4-7 days. The reports from CDC reveal 1.2 million cases of salmonella occur in the U.S. every year.

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