With everything that’s been happening in the world this year, many pet parents have started to wonder: is it possible to catch diseases from our dogs? The answer is yes—diseases known as zoonotic diseases can be transmitted from a dog to a human. However, basic sanitation means you don’t really have much to worry about. Learn more here from your Santa Rosa, CA vet.

What Kind of Diseases Can I Catch From My Dog?

There are several zoonotic diseases that a human could catch from a dog. Rabies is perhaps the most infamous of all, but other diseases like salmonella, leptospirosis, Ehrlichiosis, giardiasis, Lyme disease, brucellosis, and ringworm could be transmitted from a dog to a human. Plus, parasites like hookworms, roundworms, and mites could be transmitted from a dog to a human, although this is very rare.

Am I At a High Risk of Contracting a Disease From My Dog?

No, you’re probably not at a high risk of contracting a disease from your own dog. Individuals at the highest risk include those with compromised immune systems, pregnant women, people undergoing chemotherapy or radiation treatment, elderly individuals, and young children. But it’s important to understand that even these individuals can easily own pets—thanks to modern veterinary care like pest-control products and vaccination, even those in the high-risk group are very unlikely to catch an illness from a dog. And the risk drops even lower when people practice basic hygiene and sanitation protocol—read on to find out more about keeping yourself and your family members safe.

How Do I Keep Myself and My Family Safe?

Wash your hands on a regular basis, and avoid any kind of direct physical contact with your dog’s fecal matter. It’s also a good idea to wash your dog’s food and water dishes, toys, and bedding every once in a while to keep things bacteria- and grime-free. And remember to have your dog kept up to date on essential vaccinations, and keep them on year-round pest control medicines to ward off worms, fleas, and ticks. When you and your family follow these basic steps, you’re virtually eliminating any risk that you’ll catch an illness from your canine companion.

Does your dog need pest control medicines? Is he or she behind on their vaccinations? We can help with that. Call your Santa Rosa, CA animal hospital to set up an office appointment.