Tails of Seattle: A pets blog
Veterinary Q&A: Follow up on lumps and bumps
Posted by Neena Pellegrini
Dr. Jim Evermann, virologist and professor at Washington State University's College of Veterinary Medicine, answers a follow-up question to our earlier posting about lumps and bumps on pets.
Answer: In general, microorganisms that cause skin lesions in pets are species-specific, meaning they are not normally infectious to humans.
There's a big asterisk to add though.
If we are talking about people who are very old, very young, or immunocompromised there is a chance they can develop an infection.
Also, we need to keep in mind that all microorganisms are constantly evolving and changing.
Again, there is a remote chance that a normally healthy person runs in to a new bug and an infection results.
Overall the best advice to give pet owners is when handling any animal, practice good hygiene and if you have questions, consult your personal physician and veterinarian.
The following are proper hand washing steps:
-- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold) and apply soap.
-- Rub your hands together to make a lather and scrub them well; be sure to scrub the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
-- Continue rubbing your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the "Happy Birthday" song from beginning to end twice.
-- Rinse your hands well under running water.
-- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Washing hands with soap and water is the best way to reduce the number of germs on them. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers can quickly reduce the number of germs on hands in some situations, but sanitizers do not eliminate all types of germs. Hand sanitizers are not effective when hands are visibly dirty.
Dr. Jim Evermann
Evermann is virologist and professor at Washington State University's College of Veterinary Medicine. His special interests include clinical virology and the ecology and epidemiology of infectious diseases of cats and dogs.
Do you have a question about pet health? Ask now! We'll pose some of your questions to a local vet in an upcoming post.
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