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Bacteria linked to Petland puppies infects 2 in Pennsylvania

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review - 9/11/2017

Sept. 11--Bacteria linked to puppies from chain store Petland has infected people in Pennsylvania and six other states, according to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Two people in Pennsylvania were among 39 people who were infected with Campylobacter bacteria after exposure to puppies sold at Petland, according to a CDC outbreak advisory published Monday. Infection with the bacteria causes flu-like symptoms that typically last about a week and can be dangerous for people with compromised immune systems.

The illnesses were reported from Sept. 15 through Aug. 12.

Ohio, Florida, Kansas, Missouri, Tennessee and Wisconsin were also affected, according to the release. Twelve people found to be infected were Petland employees and 27 had recently purchased a puppy from the chain, visited one of the stores or visited a home with a puppy from one of the stores.

The outbreak advisory did not specify where in Pennsylvania the infections were found. The state Health Department typically doesn't release county-level information on disease outbreaks, citing patient privacy laws.

State health departments and federal agencies are investigating. The CDC urges people to wash their hands after touching dogs, their poop or their food to prevent infections. Dogs can carry the bacteria no matter where they are from, according to the agency.

Wes Venteicher is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-380-5676, or via Twitter @wesventeicher.


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