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Zika and Pets

The United States Center for Disease Control has published information about the Zika Virus and pets.  Some of that information is below and you can follow the link to their website to learn more.

What we know:

Zika virus is transmitted to people primarily through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito (A. aegypti and A. albopictus). These are the same mosquitoes that spread dengue and chikungunya viruses. At this time there have been no reports of other animals becoming sick with Zika or of being able to spread Zika to people or other animals.

  • At this time, animals do not appear to be involved in the spread of Zika virus.
  • There is no evidence that Zika virus is spread to people from contact with animals.
  • There have not been any reports of pets or other types of animals becoming sick with Zika virus. However, more research is needed to better understand Zika virus in animals.
  • Animals in the United States are not at risk of becoming sick with Zika virus.

Zika in animals

Zika virus was first discovered in a monkey with a mild fever in the Zika Forest of Uganda in the 1940s. Nonhuman primates (apes and monkeys) have shown the ability to become infected with Zika virus; but, only a few naturally and experimentally infected monkeys and apes have had any signs of illness at all, and then it was only a mild, transient fever without any other symptoms. A small number of monkeys were reported to have Zika virus in one study done in 2016 in an area of Brazil with high numbers of human illness. More research is needed to better understand the potential for monkeys and apes to be reservoirs for Zika virus. The prevalence of Zika virus in monkeys and other nonhuman primates is currently unknown.

There is also limited evidence from one study done in Indonesia in the late 1970s that horses, cows, carabaos (water buffaloes), goats, ducks, and bats could become infected with Zika, but there is no evidence that they develop disease or pose a risk for Zika virus transmission to humans. There have not been any reports of pets or other types of animals becoming sick with Zika virus. More information on Zika virus transmission is available here(http://www.cdc.gov/zika/transmission/index.html).

There have not been any reports of pets or other types of animals becoming sick with Zika virus.

Bringing pets or other animals into the United States

Some animals, including monkeys and apes, are not allowed to be imported as pets under any circumstances. Each state and US territory has its own rules for pet ownership and importation, and these rules may be different from federal regulations. You can find more information about animal importation here.

Alcohol and Pets

Our friends at the Pet Poison Helpline have shared some information about the dangers of alcohol and pets.

Most people know not to give alcoholic drinks to their pets; however, alcohol poisoning in pets is more common than you think! This is because alcohol can be found in surprising places. Rum-soaked fruitcake or unbaked dough containing yeast result in alcohol poisoning and other life-threatening problems. Unbaked bread dough will expand in the warm, moist environment of the stomach and can result in a bloated stomach (called “bloat”), which can then progress to a gastric-dilitation volvulus (GDV), which is a twisted stomach. Signs of GDV include vomiting, non-productive retching, a distended stomach, an elevated heart rate, weakness, collapse, and death. Secondly, when the yeast in the unbaked dough is fermented, it results in the production of carbon dioxide (causing the bloat) and alcohol. Alcohol from the fermenting yeast is rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream and results in alcohol poisoning quickly. Ingestion of alcohol can cause dangerous drops in blood sugar, blood pressure and body temperature. Intoxicated animals can experience seizures and respiratory failure.

To read more, go to: www.petpoisonhelpline.com/poison/alcohol

Thanksgiving and Pets

With Thanksgiving approaching, your dog or cat will inevitably be begging to join your family in the big turkey dinner. Please make sure that you tell your guests to refrain!  The fat from turkey meat and skin can be really problematic for your pet's stomach.  In addition, the bones can break and cause serious internal injuries.  You may want to have a special, pet snack ready for your pet so that they can at least be part of the celebration.

Xylitol, Chocolate and Pets

Please don’t feed your pets candy during Halloween! They don’t need it so it’s better to be safe than sorry.  The AVMA strongly advises avoiding food with the two which often appear in candy

  1. Xylitol-containing products (xylitol is an artificial sweetener often found in sugar-free candy and gum);
  2. Chocolate

In the event that you pet does eat something that concerns you, please call us or the Pet Poison Hotline (they may charge a small fee for the call) at 800-213-6680)

BBQ, Pets and Guests

BBQ, Pets and Guests

Summer is officially here! It’s a great time for outdoor fun and BBQing or grilling with your pets, friends, and family. While you may know what your pet can and cannot eat, it is important to share this information with others. Don’t assume that your friends know what foods are toxic to pets. Several foods to avoid include fatty sausages (pancreatitis), chocolate from s’mores (chocolate toxicity), and wild mushrooms (mushroom toxicity can prove fatal to certain dog breeds). While the list can be very extensive, we encourage you to have a brief conversation with your friends. They will appreciate it and so will your pets!

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