Zoonotic diseases affected 15 U.S. states
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the outbreak has affected 54 people in 15 states, and around one third of the affected required hospitalization.
At the moment, no cases have been reported in Michigan, but situations like this remind us that we should always keep zoonotic diseases in mind.
Zoonotic diseases are diseases that are transferred between animals and people. Some of the zoonotic diseases of dairy cattle that are present in the U.S are cryptosporidiosis, E. Coli, ringworm, salmonella, and tuberculosis.
These diseases are not present in every herd, but they represent a potential risk that need to be addressed in every farm.
Cattle do not always show clinical signs of the diseases, despite being carriers. For example, a healthy cow can have E. coli in her digestive system and be shedding E. coli in its feces. That same E. coli can cause severe symptoms if a person is infected with it.
People that work with dairy cattle can be at risk of becoming infected with a zoonotic disease. However, families of employees and people in close contact with dairy personnel can be at risk too. The compliance of preventive measures protects not only people in direct contact with animals, but also people in their homes.
Prevention is especially important if there are children under 5 years old, elderly or people with weak immune systems in the families of the dairy personnel, since they can get sick more easily and could have more severe symptoms of the disease.
Contracting a zoonotic disease not only has consequences on the health and wellbeing of the person affected, it also impacts the normal operation of a dairy farm. In times when the work force is very limi ■