Can a Human Catch E Coli From a Dog?

by Melodie Anne Coffman Google
    Your veterinarian may administer antibiotics if your pooch is infected.

    Your veterinarian may administer antibiotics if your pooch is infected.

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    Escherichia coli, or E. coli as it's commonly known, is a strain of bacteria that causes severe intestinal upset. Your pooch gets infected by eating contaminated meat, coming into contact with a sick animal's droppings or drinking water contaminated with the bacteria, like from a puddle. If your vet determines that your fur pal has E. coli, you’ll need to be cautious. It is indeed possible to catch the dangerous bacteria from your canine.

    How You’ll Get It

    You can get E. coli from your furry friend by cleaning up his infected feces. This is why it’s incredibly essential to wash your hands thoroughly after scooping up his business. Additionally, you could come into contact with the harmful bacteria after petting your pooch on his rear end if he has some fecal matter stuck to his fur, or if he licks you after he cleans off his rear.


    If you become infected with the E. coli bacteria, you might not have any symptoms for one or two days, the Center for Food Security and Public Health reports. Typically, abdominal cramping and diarrhea are some of the most common symptoms. You should recover in about a week’s time, but the bacteria can be serious, even fatal, in young children and seniors. Contact your physician at the first sign of discomfort.

    Photo Credits

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    About the Author

    Melodie Anne Coffman has been writing for various online and print publications since 1996, specializing in human and animal nutrition. After receiving her master's degree in food science and human nutrition, she opened up her own nutrition consulting business in the New England area.

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