Cinnaminson, NJ, April 14th, 2011 -- Earlier this month, MSNBC published a story about pets being blamed for illnesses in 41 states. According to the article, “Salmonella in water frogs sickens 217, mostly kids”, a single breeder from California has been identified as the source of the outbreak caused by the Salmonella.
The article reports, “Infections have been detected in people ages less than 1 to 73; the median age of infection is 5. More than 70 percent of patients have been younger than 10, officials said, and about a third of those who became ill were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.”
A number of animals can harbor Salmonella. They include turtles, amphibians and reptiles. A number of these animals are commonly kept by people as pets. In response to the current outbreak linked to pet frogs, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggest the following:
• Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water right after handling anything, including water, that comes in contact with water frogs or from inside their habitat (e.g., aquarium or fish tank). Since the water from inside their habitat can carry the same germs as the water frogs themselves, following proper hand washing practices is very important.
• Kitchen sinks should not be used to empty or wash the frog’s habitat (e.g., aquarium or fish tank). If possible, empty and wash the habitat outside of the home, using disposable gloves. If bathtubs are used for cleaning the frog’s habitat, they should be cleaned thoroughly and disinfected with bleach.
• Be aware that Salmonella infections can be caused not only by water frogs, but by other amphibians and reptiles, such as turtles.
EMSL Analytical, one of the nation’s largest testing laboratories, has extensive expertise in testing for Salmonella and other dangerous pathogens. “EMSL recently sponsored the development of a public outreach video to inform people about Salmonella dangers at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1v59mjWwJZ8,” reported Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President, Marketing at EMSL. “It is important that breeders, distributors, pet store owners and the general public be aware of the dangers and simple testing can quickly determine if Salmonella is present,” he continued.
About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of food, environmental and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.