Multiple Canine Brucellosis Disease Cases Confirmed in Central Iowa

Multiple cases of disease that can be transmitted from dogs to humans confirmed in Iowa

The state veterinarian, Dr. Jeff Kaisand, says several cases of canine brucellosis have been confirmed at a commercial breeding facility for small dogs in Marion County.

"Multiple cases" of a bacterial disease that can be spread from dogs to humans have been confirmed in Iowa, according to health officials.

According to a fact sheet released by the Iowa State University, the disease is spread through direct contact or exposure to infected animal fluids or by ingesting the bacteria.

The department recommends that those who believe they might have come in contact with an infected or exposed dog, visit their primary care physician.

"This serves as a reminder that is always important to practice good biosecurity, like thoroughly washing your hands after handling animals - even household pets", the release said.

While it is rarely reported in humans, canine brucellosis is zoonotic - meaning it can infect people through contaminated blood, urine, milk or other reproductive fluids.

Canine brucellosis is a bacterial disease that can cause reproductive failure in dogs and fever, chills, fatigue and inflammation of lymph nodes in humans, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted. Infections cause flu-like symptoms - including fever and back pain - as well as joint pain.

AHeinz57 Pet Rescue bought 32 of the more than 200 dogs sold at the auction with $10,000 from an anonymous donor.

The disease can survive for months but can be eliminated with heat and disinfectants.

"We have not received any results yet", the organization said on Facebook.

"Persons with a weakened immune system due to disease or medication, young children, and pregnant women are likely at greater risk of developing more severe symptoms if they are exposed", the Department said in a notice.

Heinz said the most hard thing about this disease is dogs can't get rid of it like humans can and usually have to be put down to prevent the spread to other dogs or humans. "Please pray for our sweet babies that were finally getting the chance to have a happy life".

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