Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid: The Attack of the Killer Parasites!


According to a story in the Wall Street Journal, our pets – and potentially all of us – may be susceptible to a new laundry list of illnesses spread by parasites. Most of these parasites were previously solely associated with the developing world, but are now cropping up in the U.S.

Some of the infections are transmitted by bug bites and some by animal
feces contaminated with parasite larvae; still others are viral.

‘Kissing bugs’ spread Chagas

spread in conditions of overcrowding, malnutrition, poor sanitation and
close contact with animals receiving little veterinary care or medical care. Some of these diseases might be transmitted by pets to people. None of these illnesses are something you want to have. They have names like Chagas and dengue fever.

Toxocara is roundworm spread of our pets, feral cats and a host of animals through their feces. Children, in particular, playing the soil in the yard or a sandbox are susceptible and the result could be blindness. (Toxocara does occur in the Chicago area).

Learn more about common parasites which affect our pets at the Companion Animal Parasite Council.