An urgent warning has been issued to dog owners in the UK after a dog passed on a rare disease to its owner. A woman was hospitalized after contracting it Brucella Canisa contagious bacterial infection caused by bacteria, from his foster dog, in the first confirmed case of dog-to-human transmission in the UK.
The British Veterinary Association (BVA) issues a strong reminder of the risks of serious illness when importing dogs from abroad and urges all potential dog owners to protect the health of dogs and humans around the world.
The animal that transmitted the disease is a rescue dog that was imported from Belarus in March of this year. The woman caring for the dog was admitted to the hospital after having been in close contact with it. The foster animal and four domestic dogs that had fallen ill had to be euthanized.
Stray dogs in some European countries and other parts of the world often live in harsh conditions. Besides Brucella canine, it can harbor other undetected and life-threatening exotic diseases not found in the rest of Europe, such as leishmaniasis, rabies, canine babesiosis and heartworm, without showing any external clinical symptoms.
When imported, these chronically infected “Trojan” or carrier dogs are at risk of transmitting the infection to susceptible pets and, in the case of some diseases, to humans as well. This infection can be difficult to detect or successfully treat in such carrier dogs.
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