CDC: Drug-resistant infection in 118 people linked to pet store puppies

People were ill from January 2016 through February 2018


Puppies sold at six pet store companies led to infections in 118 people in 18 states from January 2017 through February 2018, according to a report from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Campylobacter, a common bacteria, was the cause of the illness. It can cause diarrhea, abdominal pain and fever. No deaths were reported, but 26 people were hospitalized.

Samples of the bacteria showed resistance to all antibiotics commonly used to treat the infections, according to the CDC. People with weakened immune symptoms and infants are most at risk.

Out of the 118 people infected, 28 were pet store employees, and 101 people reported contact with a pet store puppy.

The infection was traced back to 25 breeders and eight distributors. The CDC did not identify a source of the infection.

The CDC believes puppies sold through the commercial dog industry were the source of the multistate outbreak.

Officials in four states (Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin) visited 20 pet stores and collected antibiotic administration records for 154 puppies. Among 149 puppies with available information, 142 received one or more antibiotic courses before arriving or while at the store.

You can read the CDC report here.

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