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My cousin had problems with Salmonella last year. When I told him few days ago I am planning to get some pet, he was so worried. He told me I shouldn’t get any pets, because I can get Salmonella from animal. I really like animals so I want to know if that is truth. If it is truth, how can I protect myself of Salmonella?

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Salmonellosis is name of bacterial disease caused by the bacterium Salmonella. There are many different kinds of this bacterium that can make people sick. Usual symptoms are diarrhea, fever and stomach pain that start 1 to 3 days after someone get infected. Sometimes people have to go to the hospital, which I believe your cousin did, because the diarrhea is severe or the infection has affected other organs. But what your cousin told you is truth, that many kinds of animals can pass salmonellas to people. Animals can carry Salmonella and pass it in their feces or stool. So you can get Salmonella if you don’t wash your hands after touching the feces of animals. Your age and health status may affect your immune system increasing the chances of getting sick. So to protect yourself of Salmonella when you got any kind of animal is that you wash hands with soap and running water. If you have compromised immune system take care of contacts with reptiles, baby chicks, ducklings and be extra cautions when visiting farms and contacting farm animals, including animals at petting zoos.
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