Friday, 22 February, 2019


Hedgehogs May Be To Blame For Salmonella Outbreak In 8 States

A hedgehog Modal Trigger Shutterstock
Patty Aguilar | 28 January, 2019, 18:31

"Don't kiss or snuggle hedgehogs, because this can spread Salmonella germs to your face and mouth and make you sick", the agency said. So far, incidents have been reported in Colorado, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Texas, and Wyoming. One person has been hospitalized and no deaths have been reported.

The same Salmonella strain was found in three hedgehogs from two infected people's homes in Minnesota.

The CDC said Friday it has not identified a common supplier of the hedgehogs, but infected people said they bought their hedgehogs from pet stores, breeders and online.

Hedgehogs can carry salmonella bacteria in their droppings, even while appearing healthy and clean, the CDC warns.

The outbreak has affected 11 people in eight states this week, 10 of whom had recently been in contact with a hedgehog, according to the Center for Disease Control. No deaths have been reported.

Symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and abdominal pain that generally last between four and seven days.

You may keep their habitat clean, however the bacteria can easily spread to toys, bed and anywhere they go.

The Public Health Agency of Canada reported an additional 22 turkey-related salmonella infections in four provinces - British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and New Brunswick - believed to be linked to the US outbreak.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), salmonella is the cause for 1.2 million illnesses, 23,000 hospitalizations, and 450 deaths in the United States annually. Most people recover without treatment; however, some can experience severe illness in rare cases if not treated promptly.

Safety with pet hedgehogsA hedgehog may not be the right pet for everyone. Young children, older adults, and individuals with weakened immune systems are more vulnerable to complications, which can lead to hospitalization. I certainly understand the need to squish the cute thing, but the CDC also advises against kissing and snuggling these pets in general-not just during an outbreak. The CDC recommends against letting these pets wander freely in areas where you prepare food.

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