The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has issued a warning regarding Salmonella infections, particularly linked to pet turtles (mostly those known as red-eared sliders). The warning came on August 29, 2017, calling it a multi-state outbreak.
In 13 states, 37 people have been diagnosed with the strain of Salmonella Agbeni. Illnesses have been identified from March 1 through today.
While no deaths have been reported, about half of those sickened (16) required hospitalization. Five of those who have been affected are under 5 years old.
Fifteen of those found ill reported contact with pet turtles.
In 2015, state and local health officials collected samples from turtles at a street vendor. Whole genome sequencing showed that the Salmonella Agbeni isolated from ill people in this outbreak is closely related genetically to the Salmonella Agbeni isolates from turtles. This close genetic relationship means that people in this outbreak are more likely to share a common source of infection.
Salmonella can be avoided with simple, but thorough, hand washing or wearing gloves while handling the animals. However, people forget or don’t do it, and young children are not appropriately supervised.
All turtles, regardless of size, can carry Salmonella bacteria, and the same is true for any pet reptile, even if they look healthy and clean. These outbreaks serve as reminders to follow a few simple steps to enjoy pet reptiles and keep your family healthy.
Simultaneously, backyard chickens have prompted the CDC to investigate 10 separate multi-state outbreaks ofand ducks.
A reported 961 people in 48 states and the District of Columbia have been infected since January 1, 2017. Two-hundred-fifteen people have been hospitalized and one death has been reported.
CDC researchers say their investigation ties the outbreaks to contact with live poultry, such as baby chicks and ducklings, from multiple hatcheries. In nearly three quarters of the cases, those who were sickened reported contact with live poultry in the week before becoming ill.
According to the CDC,but appear healthy and clean with no signs of illness. Contact with the infected birds or their environment can cause humans to become sick.
include nausea and vomiting, blood in the stool, fever, chills, and abdominal pain. Again, the number one way to prevent salmonella infection: soap and water!