Wash your pet’s bowls to prevent salmonella

  • Animals
  • Tuesday, 09 Apr 2024

Washing your pet’s food and water dishes on a regular basis could help prevent salmonella. Photo: TNS/Dreamstime

Salmonella is a bacterial infection that can cause fever, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea. It can be transmitted from contaminated food, such as raw meat or eggs. But what you may not know is that your pets – and the food they eat – could carry salmonella, which can make you and your family sick.

In this Mayo Clinic Minute, Dr Tina Ardon, a family medicine physician, explains how to prevent salmonella infection from spreading.

Do you wash your pet’s food and water bowls regularly? If not, you could be creating an environment that harbours salmonella, which can infect both you and your furry friend.

While salmonella is a common cause of food poisoning, it also can be spread by animals and their environments.

“Salmonella is a bacterial infection that people can get from touching contaminated food or through contaminated water, or perhaps from their pets and their food and their faeces,” explains Dr Ardon.

One of the best ways to keep yourself safe from salmonella infection is prevention.

“That requires us to wash our hands consistently. Be thoughtful about washing your pet bowls and be thoughtful about their food. Wash your hands after you handle certain animal environments – maybe their beds, sheets, that sort of thing,” says Dr Ardon.

Young children, older adults and people who are immuno-compromised are especially at high risk of getting sick from salmonella infection.

“Most patients will recover on their own. Some patients may have more trouble and be so ill that they’ll require things like IV fluids, perhaps hospitalisation and, in rare cases, antibiotic therapy,” says Dr Ardon. – Tribune News Service/Mayo Clinic News Network/DeeDee Stiepan

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