By NewsDesk   @bactiman63

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and public health officials in several states report investigating an outbreak of multidrug-resistant Campylobacter jejuni infections.

Image/jagdprinzessin via pixabay

To date, 30 people in 13 states have been sickened, including four hospitalizations. No deaths have been reported.

Epidemiologic and laboratory evidence indicate that contact with puppies, especially those at pet stores, is the likely source of this outbreak. A single, common supplier of puppies has not been identified.

Whole genome sequencing (WGS) analysis of 26 isolates from ill people predicted antibiotic resistance to tetracycline (26 isolates), ciprofloxacin (25), nalidixic acid (25), azithromycin (23), erythromycin (23), clindamycin (23), telithromycin (23), and gentamicin (18).

In addition, testing shows that bacteria from people infected with Campylobacter in the current outbreak are related genetically to a 2016–2018 outbreak of multidrug-resistant Campylobacter infections linked to pet store puppies.

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CDC offers the following advice to pet owners:

  • Always wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water after touching your puppy or dog, after handling their food, and after cleaning up after them.
  • Adults should supervise handwashing for young children.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use hand sanitizer until you are able to wash your hands with soap and water.
  • Pick up and dispose of dog poop, especially in areas where children might play.
  • Contact your veterinarian if you notice any signs of illness in your puppy or dog.
  • Within a few days after getting a new puppy or dog, take it to a veterinarian for a health check-up.

Campylobacter causes an estimated 1.5 million illnesses each year in the United States.

People often acquire Campylobacter infection by eating raw or undercooked poultry or eating something that touched it. They also get it from eating other foods, including seafood, meat, and produce, by contact with animals, and by drinking untreated water.

Although people with Campylobacter infection usually recover on their own, some need antibiotic treatment.